Personalized medicine uses the knowledge of an individual's genetic profile, helping doctors choose the proper medication or treatment and administer it in a way that best matches that specific patient.
Your genetic profile can be used to help prevent disease, diagnose disease and treat any disease most effectively.
In an effort to improve medical science, scientists and physicians are exploring the potential of personalized medicine. While the idea of individualized treatment plans isn't new, modern technology makes unique and specialized health care plans more accessible than ever before.
Personalized medicine can help anyone, but older people, in particular, can gain a lot from this medical approach.
How Does Personalized Medicine Work?
"One size fits all" isn't a practical approach for medicine. Everyone has a unique genetic makeup that influences how your body reacts to diseases and treatment, and personalized medicine considers this when building care plans for patients.
Medical advancements like molecular diagnostic devices allow doctors to learn more about patients' genetics, which, in turn, gives them more information about how a patient might respond to a disease or drug. A deeper understanding of each patient's unique body and needs empowers doctors to develop a more precise and effective treatment plan.
Prevention Over Reaction
One of the most significant ways personalized medicine can benefit older adults is that it allows a doctor to prevent health problems before they occur. Most modern medicine focuses on reacting to an issue instead of preventing it. On the other hand, personalized medicine offers insight into a patient's predisposition to certain diseases and conditions. Doctors can better predict if someone is susceptible to an illness or likely to develop a condition throughout the course of their life.
Preventing health issues helps older adults who might take longer to recover or develop further complications alongside a disease. The insights that personalized medicine delivers can go a long way in preserving the good health of senior patients.
Faster, More Accurate Diagnoses
A deeper understanding of a patient's genetics also enables better diagnostic processes. Part of this stems from doctors knowing the conditions and disorders a patient is predisposed to. Understanding a patient's susceptibility to specific health problems helps medical professionals watch out for those particular issues.
Additionally, analyzing genetic information enables faster and more sensitive tests. When diagnostics are more precise, doctors can pinpoint problems early and act quickly to deliver more effective treatments.
Individualized and Effective Treatment Plans
Genetic information can offer more than just insight into how a patient will react to specific diseases or conditions. This knowledge also helps doctors determine how effective specific treatments will be for individuals.
Inherited gene variations can affect how the body responds to certain medications. Unsafe and ineffective drugs cause avoidable deaths, adverse reactions, many of which result in costly hospitalizations. The ability for doctors and pharmacists to know the proper medication and dosage can be a game-changer for health care.
When health care providers can predict how a drug will affect the body, they can more easily prescribe the most appropriate medicines and treatments. This reduces trial and error methods and the harmful side effects, wasted resources, and steep prescription costs they create.
Individualized treatment plans are faster, safer, and more affordable for older adults and all other patients.
About the Author
Mallory Knee is a freelance writer for multiple online publications where she can showcase her affinity for all things beauty and fashion. She particularly enjoys writing for communities of passionate women who come together for a shared interest and empower one another in the process. In her free time, you can find Mallory trying a fun new dinner recipe, practicing calligraphy, or hanging out with her family.
Contributor since September 25th, 2020
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