When should Ashkenazi Jewish genetic testing be performed?
The ideal time for Ashkenazi Jewish genetic testing is prior to pregnancy. This affords a couple the greatest number of options if both are found to be carriers of the same disease. The most cost-effective alternative is to screen one member of a couple first. If that person is a carrier of any of the diseases, then her/his partner can be screened for that/those disease(s) only. If that person is not a carrier of any of the diseases, then her/his partner does not need to be screened. When time is a factor, either because a pregnancy is already underway or a couple is very anxious to become pregnant, the best alternative may be to screen both members of a couple simultaneously. Your healthcare provider can advise you about which option is preferable in your situation.