There are thousands of genes on our chromosomes, and many of us are carriers of a specific gene defect without being aware of it. When your partner carries the same recessive gene, your child has a 25% chance of receiving both genes and getting the disease. Examples of these types of recessive genetic diseases, which affect one in 400 births, include cystic fibrosis and sickle cell anemia.
A simple blood test can screen you or your partner to see if you are a carrier of more than 100 genetic diseases that are relevant to pregnancy and babies. When we only screen based on ethnicity and family history, we miss 80% of carriers. An expanded genetic carrier blood test can be done at any time, pre-conceptually or during pregnancy.