Pharmacogenetic (PGx) testing is used for determining how an individual will respond to a particular medicine. PGx testing provides insight into a patient’s metabolic pathways. Knowing which pathways are functioning normally or abnormally allows a physician to prescribe medications as intended by the drug manufacturer, select the most appropriate dose, and even the best drug for the patient.
We can now identify patients who have variations or mutations in the genes that control certain drug metabolic processes. Knowing whether a patient is an extensive/normal, poor, intermediate or ultrarapid metabolizer of a medication allows for patient-specific guidance on which medications should be selected or avoided, and the optimal dosage to prescribe. This avoids a lengthy trial and error process and is a tremendous advancement in healthcare. With PGx testing, gone are the days of a one size fits all approach.