Pharmacogenomics (PGx)

Phoenix Mental Health Services offers a genetic test called Pharmacogenomics (PGx). PGx is the study of how a person’s DNA affects their response to medications. It is a new approach to understand whether individual genetic variations affect how their body responds to different medicines. Almost 99% of people carry at least one of these genetic variations. It is very important we know our genetic variations for how we respond to medications.

Not all medications work the same for every person. Factors like age, lifestyle, and DNA can impact how your body responds to medicines. So, it can be a struggle to fully understand how a given medication works for an individual. Unfortunately, the only way to determine whether a medication works (without genetic testing) is to take it and hope it works.

Especially with pain and mental health medications it takes several months to years to find the right medication to help with their symptoms. Psychiatry is the only field of medicine where the treatment needs to be provided without direct assessment of the organ being treated which makes it so difficult to find the right medication for a patient with minimal or no side effects. With the PGx test it can help doctors more accurately identify which medication and what doses are likely to work best for an individual before they are treated, to help them feel better as soon as possible, with minimal medication “Trial and Error”.

By looking at your individual unique genetic makeup and how it metabolises to different drugs enables clinicians to deliver recommendations on tailored treatments with reduced side effects and increase patient compliance.

Your path to personalised medication starts with a simple cheek swab test. After an initial consultation, the test kit will be sent to you with instructions and the sample can be returned to the clinic in a pre-paid envelope. It will be then sent to a lab in Canada for analysis to reveal which gene variants you have and how they impact your response to medication. You will receive your results within 3 weeks. A 45-minute appointment will then be booked with pharmacist so she can discuss your results with you. Together with your consultant, you will create a personalised treatment plan that, according to your test results, is likely to be effective.

One PGX test for life will provide you with a life-long insights into your unique, predicted response to medications commonly used to treat pain and mental health conditions, because the genes you are born with don’t change. 


Pharmacogenomics (PGx)