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Measuring Telomere Lengths to Make Smart Treatment Decisions

When it comes to the DNA of a person, you can find telomeres from its endcaps. The length of your telomeres has a variability rate of five percent according to scientists and physicians as you measure it. Recent research studies show that telomere length testing can help health professionals decide the best treatment for patients who have certain types of conditions. These tests are great for patients who are dealing with certain kinds of bone marrow failure. Testing or getting the length of the telomeres has been proven to offer a lot of benefits for health professionals when it comes to providing proper care to their patients. There are many studies that prove the many benefits of accurate telomere length testing and making treatment decisions for patients. This article will provide you a glimpse of these many studies.

When it comes to studies carried out on particular health conditions, scientists have shown that there are diseases related to short telomeres. A study carried out and published last February proves that measuring the length of telomeres offers results that help identify individuals who are at an increased risk of getting diseases with characteristic short telomeres. A group of genetic diseases that manifest as bone marrow failure or pulmonary fibrosis are characterized by having very short telomeres. Health diseases associated with short telomeres have been found to affect around 5,000 to 10,000 Americans. A lot of health professionals even agree that this group of diseases affect the same number of people as those suffering from particular kinds of leukemia. If you compare the prevalence with its present estimates, the former is even higher than the latter.

For the measurement of telomere length to be accurate, the use of a clinically reliable tool is a must. This is crucial when it comes to the application of the test in hospital settings. Measuring telomere lengths also allows for doctors to better access them. These results are used by doctors for them to provide their patients proper diagnosis as well as give them proper treatment advice.

Telomeres are important parts of your DNA because they protect its ends. If you happen to see plastic tubes from the ends of your shoelaces, these parts of your DNA function as such. They naturally shorten as you age. There are repetitive DNA sequences that comprise the telomeres. The length of normal telomeres are enough to withstand erosion and damages that take place over a normal cell lifespan. Cells that have very short telomeres cannot take care of these damages. The endcaps of your DNA are something that they can easily blow up. This is why people suffer from certain diseases. Bone marrow failure and pulmonary fibrosis are not the only disease conditions that people with short telomeres are at risk of. Other conditions that these people can suffer from include other types of cancers, myelodysplastic syndrome, liver disease, and emphysema. That is why accurate telomere length testing is a must to determine people at risk for these conditions.

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