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Know your family history

What if I am adopted?

Depending on the laws in the state where you were adopted, you may have little or no access to medical information about your biological family. Even if you are able to obtain records, they are likely to be outdated and incomplete.

  • Gather whatever information you can. For instance, you may know or be able to guess your birth parents' ethnicity.
  • Talk to your adoptive parents. They may have medical information about your biological parents or siblings that they haven't shared with you before.
  • Pay attention to your personal medical history and your partner's. If you have experienced pregnancy losses or had difficulty conceiving, these could be signs of an inherited health problem.
  • Make sure your doctor and genetic counselor know you are adopted. They can help you determine whether screening is right for you.