Long-term cognitive and emotional impact of genetic testing for carriers of cystic fibrosis: the effects of test result and gender

Health Psychol. 1997 Jan;16(1):51-62. doi: 10.1037//0278-6133.16.1.51.


The cognitive and emotional responses to genetic testing for carriers of cystic fibrosis (CF) of 241 female and 36 male carriers and a matched sample who had received a negative screening result were compared 3 years after testing. The main predictor of responses to testing was the type of result received. Gender differences in response to screening were also found: Women were more likely to feel relieved and less likely than men to feel indifferent, regardless of test results. There was an interaction between test results and gender for feeling happy and healthy about test results. The greater impact of testing on women may reflect gender differences in appraisal or in coping with the threat of being a carrier for a genetic disorder.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Affect
  • Anxiety / etiology
  • Attitude to Health
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Cystic Fibrosis / genetics*
  • Cystic Fibrosis / psychology*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Genetic Testing / psychology*
  • Heterozygote*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Parents / psychology*
  • Regression Analysis
  • Sampling Studies
  • Sex Factors