Pharmacogenomics Testing

Pharmacogenomics Testing-photo

What is Pharmacogenomics Testing?

Pharmacogenomics (PGx) is the study of how a person’s genes affect their response to specific medications. It allows pharmacists and clinicians to better match the medication to the patient, improving the likelihood of therapeutic success while reducing the potential of toxicity.

Approximately 99% of people have genetic variations that can make them unable to process certain medications the way they’re intended.

Pharmacogenomics (PGx) is the study of how a person’s genes affect their response to specific medications. It allows pharmacists and clinicians to better match the medication to the patient, improving the likelihood of therapeutic success while reducing the potential of toxicity.

Here’s an example

When prescribing for pain medication or antidepressants, the prescriber will prescribe drug A, and if that doesn’t work then they will prescribe drug B, and if that doesn’t work, they go on to drug C. This type of therapy approach could increase the likelihood of pain and suffering due to side effects or
delay of effectiveness of medication for their condition. Pharmacists have extensive training of how drugs work in the body, and PGx testing allows pharmacists to maximize their drug knowledge to help the patient reach relief from the condition they are trying to manage. Ultimately this is highly
personalized medication management.

What does PGx testing tell me?

This genetic test, done by a simple and painless cheek swab, can give your pharmacist and physician valuable information to help them determine more appropriate medications and doses of medications that will work best for your unique genetic makeup. It can help reduce time suffering with side effects and varying treatments of medication. Through this genetic test, you may find out 1 of 4 ways your body responds to certain medications:

Patient responds to a lower dose

Patient responds to a higher dose

Patient responds to normal dose

Patient responds to an alternate medication than prescribed

What are the overall benefits of PGx testing?

Minimize side effects which reduces pain and suffering

Save time and cost in your healthcare

Reduce readmission and emergency department visit rates

Improved patient care by personalizing medication plans based on individual genetics

How Our Pharmacy Can Help You with Pharmacogenomic Testing

Step 1:  Ask our pharmacy staff for the cheek swab test that you take home with you. 

Step 2: After swabbing your cheek, you mail to the lab.

Step 3: Results are sent to the pharmacist for interpretation.

Step 4: The pharmacist contacts you to make an appointment for a consultation and game plan.

Step 5: Pharmacist sends report with recommendation to your provider.

Does insurance cover this testing?

Some plans are seeing the importance of this test and how it is contributing to lower overall health costs and improving the effectiveness of medication therapy. Others are slow to cover this valuable test. Please check with your plan to see if it is a covered test or reimbursable. Otherwise, you can always self-pay for this test that will only need to be taken once in a lifetime.

Contact us for more information or to schedule an appointment at 616 320-4001