‘There’s a 50% chance I’ve a fatal disease. Do I find out?’

Source: BBC News


If you could see how the rest of your life might play out would you want to? Jackie Harrison has a 50-50 chance of a disease that has killed her mother, uncle and grandfather. Should she take a test to find out whether she will get it too – and could she cope with the result? The BBC’s Sarah Bowen has been following her story.

It’s rare for a day to pass when Jackie Harrison doesn’t wonder if she’s inherited the faulty gene that could lead to her developing Huntington’s disease, a condition that causes certain nerve cells in the brain to waste away and slowly robs you of the ability to talk, to walk, to move, to think, to swallow.

There is no treatment for Huntington’s and no cure.

Jackie is 51 and lives in Brighouse, a small, industrial town in West Yorkshire, with her partner of 30 years, Tony, and younger brother, Mark.

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