The Fertility & Reproductive Medicine Center is pleased to offer in-house genetic counseling services to our patients.  Genetic counseling benefits every patient, even those with no known family history of genetic disease.  The process provides you with an opportunity to understand your genetic risk factors prior to conceiving when your options are greatest.  The goal of genetic counseling is to provide you with accurate, comprehensive information and to support your decision-making process as you build your family.  Our certified genetic counselor can help you understand:

  • How inherited conditions may affect you or your future children
  • Whether a specific genetic test, such as carrier screening, may be right for you
  • The benefits and limitations of a genetic test
  • What the results of a genetic test mean for you and your future children

Below are examples of patients who may benefit from genetic counseling:

  • Patients interested in preimplantation genetic testing (PGT) of their embryos
  • Patients wishing to discuss options for genetic carrier screening
  • Patients who have a genetic condition or are known carriers of a genetic condition
  • Patients with a chromosome abnormality such as a translocation or inversion
  • Patients with a history of two or more miscarriages
  • Patients with a family history of a genetic condition or health issue that may have a genetic cause such as physical birth defects, intellectual disability, autism, or hearing loss
  • Patients who wish to discuss age-related reproductive risks (typically individuals 35 years and older who will be contributing their eggs or age 40 and older for those who will be contributing their sperm)
  • Patients who are using a sperm or egg donor and have questions about the donor’s genetic test results or family history
  • Patients with congenital absence of the vas deferens (CAVD)
  • Couples who are genetically related to one another

Prepare for your appointment with our genetic counselor

  • Please send copies of any genetic testing you, your partner, or your family members have had to our office in advance of your appointment
  • Gather medical information about your family members including any genetic conditions or serious health issues, the age of onset of health conditions and treatment needed, and ages and causes of death
  • Consider bringing your partner (if applicable) to your appointment to allow your genetic counselor to review their medical and family history as well

Meet the Genetic Counselor | Marisa Andrews, MS, CGC

My passion for genetic counseling comes from my belief that genetic testing can improve patients’ lives and their medical care.  The field of medical genetics is continuously evolving so it is crucial to provide patients with accurate and balanced information on how genetic testing may be relevant for their individual case.  I am honored to play a role in empowering patients and supporting their decision-making through risk assessment, genetics education, and counseling.  At the end of the day, it is about making the tool of genetic testing work for the patients to achieve their goals.


If you would like to learn more about genetics and genetic conditions, we recommend the following websites:

Make an appointment with our genetic counselor

To schedule an appointment with a Washington University genetic counselor, please call our office or request an appointment online.