Although the number of genetic tests available has exploded in the past decade and a half, clinicians and patients are often on their own to try to assess whether such tests might help improve care.
Tests were available for only about 100 genetic diseases in 1993, a number that soared to more than 1700 in 2008, according to GeneTests, a resource operated by the University of Washington and funded by the National Institutes of Health that includes information on genetic tests (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/GeneTests/). But governments in the United States and Europe provide limited oversight of such tests, and there is inadequate evidence on the extent to which genetic tests improve patient care.
Kuehn BM. Growing Calls in United States, Europe to Improve Regulation of Genetic Testing. JAMA. 2009;302(13):1405-1408. doi:10.1001/jama.2009.1341