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Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust

Clinical Genetics

 

About us

Clinical Genetics is a medical discipline specialising in the diagnosis and management of conditions with a known or probable genetic origin. People and families are referred to us because they or a member of their family would like to discuss an inherited genetic condition.

Northampton Clinical Genetics is part of the Leicestershire-Northamptonshire-Rutland Clinical Genomics Service and serve the population of Northamptonshire. We offer a comprehensive service supporting individuals and families undergoing investigation for new and inherited genetic conditions.

What we do

Hereditary diseases are often rare and affected families require specialist advice and services. We offer a highly expertise service where we provide:

  • Diagnostic assessment for people of all ages
  • Risk estimation for current and future pregnancies and the extended family where a genetic condition may be suspected.
  • A discussion about genetic and genomic testing where possible
  • Predictive genetic testing - We support people discuss the implications and possibility of genetic testing are at particular risk of genetic disorders.
  • Support families with information about genetic disorders so that they can make informed choices about their future.
  • Risk assessment and advice for relatives
  • Cancer Genetics. A small number of cancers are the result of an inherited predisposition. We assess family histories and arrange genetic testing, where indicated, to identify families where there is an increased chance of developing cancer.
  • Where possible, we discuss things people can do to lower their risk, for example, screening in those with an increased chance of developing cancer or a heart condition.
  • Genetic counselling

It's important to note that although a condition may be genetic, it does not always mean it has been inherited - there may not be anyone else in the family with the same disorder.

 

Our genetic counsellors offer support, providing information about managing genetic conditions and the risk of developing or passing on a condition which runs in your family. We can help you understand more about your diagnosis, its implications and can support you to make decisions and plan for the future. 

Referral Process

Information for health Professionals

Clinical referrals are accepted from General Practitioners via ESR (electronic referrals) only.

For Consultants, associate specialists, cancer family history clinics, antenatal services, and other health professionals. Referrals can be sent via letter or email to the following contact details:

Department of Clinical Genetics
Child Health Directorate
Northampton General Hospital
Cliftonville
Northampton
NN1 5BD

e-mail: genetics.ngh@nhs.net

When we receive a referral letter in the department, the referral will be triaged, and an appointment will be allocated to the patient if appropriate.

Cancer Family history

This family history questionnaire needs to be sent with the referral as detailed above.

The Family history questionnaire should be provided to your patient and once completed by the patient, sent with the referral.

If referrals are urgent, please ensure you have advised the level of urgency in your referral.


Cancer Genetics Family History Form is currently undergoing work but will be available soon. Thank you for your patience whilst we update our service information.

Where can I find information about Genetic tests and required forms?

We are supported by our colleagues at the East Genomics Hub.

Information about test order forms: Order a test | East Genomics

Information about criteria for genetic testing:

NHS England » National genomic test directory

FAQs

How can I get referred to your department?

You can be referred to Genetics by your GP, a hospital doctor or a specialist nurse or midwife.

If you are concerned that your situation requires an urgent referral, please ask your doctor to refer you urgently.

I am pregnant and have a family history of a Genetic condition and would like to understand my options, what should I do?

We recommend speaking with your midwife/GP to refer you to Clinical Genetics urgently.

Where are genetics clinics located?

The location of your clinic appointment will be specified in your appointment letter. Clinics are currently held at Northampton General, Kettering General, Nene Park outpatients or Leicester Royal Infirmary.

Appointments are also conducted via telephone or Video appointments if suitable.

Who will I see at my genetics clinic appointment?

You will be seen by a member of the Genomic medicine team- a doctor (a consultant or a specialist registrar) or a Genetic Counsellor.

How long is the appointment?

Most genetic appointments are 45 minutes long, so you should not feel rushed. Please bring someone with you for support if you wish. If more than one member from the family has been referred and you would like to be seen together let us know. In certain situations, it is helpful to see members of the extended family who may have information relevant to the genetic condition in the family.

What will happen at my appointment?

The details of your appointment will vary depending on the reason for your referral but will often include:

  • Assessment of the problem that has brought you to the clinic which will be discussed in detail. The consultant or counsellor will ascertain what questions you may have and what you would like to be the outcome from your visit.
  • A family tree will be drawn which may include medical details of relatives, such as cause and age of their diagnoses or death. It is useful to have found out these details before you come to the clinic or bring a relative that may know.
  • A medical examination may be carried out on relevant members of the family.
  • The doctor or Genetic Counsellor will explain the genetic issues to you and discuss all available options.
  • You will be encouraged to ask questions and to make your own decision about what to do with your genetic information. The doctor or Genetic counsellor can help you with this but will not make decision for you.

In some situations, tests (such as blood tests) may be offered. At other times you will be asked to take some time to come to decision about whether to proceed with a test and offered the opportunity to come back at a later date. Details on how to have a blood test will be discussed at your Clinic appointment.

At the end of the appointment a plan will be made. This may include information gathering, special tests and/or another appointment. 

What happens after my appointment?

A letter with a plan and agreed next steps will be sent to the referring doctor, copied to the patient and GP. Onward referrals may also be made on your behalf if this is required.

Our Team:

Genetic Counsellors:

Sarah Durell – Principal Genetic Counsellor, Northampton General Hospital

Urvi Savania – Genetic Counsellor, Northampton General Hospital

Rebecca Jones - Genetic Counsellor, Northampton General Hospital

We are also supported by Genetic Counsellors based at Leicester Royal Infirmary.

Administrative team:

Janet Dunford – Medical Secretary, Northampton General Hospital

Katie Earl - Administrative assistant, Northampton General Hospital

Priya Mistry – Clerical officer, Northampton General Hospital

Clinical Geneticists and Specialty doctors based at Leicester Clinical Genomics

Dr. Pradeep Vasudevan – LNR genomic Lead and Consultant Geneticist, Leicester Royal Infirmary

Dr. Neeta Lakhani – Consultant Geneticist, Leicester Royal Infirmary  

Dr. Emily Craft – Consultant Geneticist, Leicester Royal Infirmary

Prof Julian Barwell - Cancer Consultant Geneticist, Leicester Royal Infirmary

We are supported by our colleagues at the East Genomics Hub East Genomics | East Genomics

 

 

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