Demystifying Genetic Prenatal Testing

Demystifying Genetic Prenatal Testing

As the field of genetic testing grows, so do the options for parents to learn more about their baby prior to birth. However, the choices and information from these tests can be confusing and sometimes overwhelming. “Which test to take? What do the results mean? I am over 35 years old, will I need more testing and then what do I do with the results?” These are just some of the myriad of questions that come up around genetic testing.

In this episode of Yoga | Birth | Babies, I speak with board certified licensed genetic counselor, Ushta Davar Canteenwalla. Ushta helps demystify these daunting questions and bring clarity to genetic testing. For anyone thinking of conceiving soon or undergoing tests currently, this episode can bring ease and comfort around the subject of genetic testing.

  • Learn a little about Ushta and what brought into the field of genetics.
  • Why someone might choose genetic testing.
  • Reasons someone may choose to opt out of testing.
  • A good time to start thinking about genetic testing.
  • How does one choose what tests to have?
  • How genetic testing has changed in the last 5-10 years.
  • How accurate is genetic testing?
  • Does a negative/”normal” result mean everything is ok?
  • What happens if these tests show that there is an increased risk?
  • How testing shift as someone ages.
  • What is the NIPT test?
  • What can be expected with genetic counseling- what kind of support is given, how are the tests explained?
  • How genetic counselors help the pregnant person find confidence and information when there is so much fear around genetic testing?
  • Where you can find Ushta’s work!


About Ushta Davar Canteenwalla:

Ushta is is a board certified licensed genetic counselor with over 13 yrs experience in clinical genetics. Having a deep understanding of each person’s concerns and questions to guide them towards answers that make sense for them is her passion.

Her experience ranges from running a collaborative care fetal diagnostic center at Columbia University Medical Center, working in prenatal, pediatric, and cardiac genetics, as well as leading a large genetic counseling team at a lab that offers reproductive genetic testing.

In 2018 Ushta started the company FiND Genetics to create greater access to genetic healthcare.  She saw a growing need to help people navigate genetic testing options and bridge the gap between an influx of information and getting comprehensive, unbiased genetic information.

Additional resources:

National Society of Genetic Counselors  – NSGC

“Is That Gender Test Really 99% Accurate?”

Instagram: @findgenetics


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