Family history is an important part of your medical record. It tells medical practitioners what to look out for and also can provide vital clues when you are ill. Common disorders such as heart disease, stroke, and allergies often run in families.
Hereditary illnesses and conditions are passed down from parent to child. These include cystic fibrosis, anemia, color blindness, and celiac disease. Children whose parents are both carriers of the cystic fibrosis gene have a 1 in 4 chance of catching this disease. The illness causes lung infections and breathing difficulties, as well as digestive and reproductive issues.
Anemia occurs when someone doesn’t have enough healthy red blood cells to carry oxygen around the body. In sickle cell anemia, the blood cells have an irregular shape.
Color blindness is the inability to perceive different colors. The condition is often inherited from the mother, but can be caused by illnesses such as diabetes.
Celiac disease occurs when wheat proteins from gluten cause the body’s white blood cells to attack healthy cells. Often, the small intestine is affected.
When you go for a medical examination, a doctor and a nurse may ask the same questions in order to double-check information.