Friday, April 5, 2024

WHAT IS A PEDIGREE? (In memory of my Dad, 1927 - 2019)

PEDIGREE of AMY BYER SHAINMAN, (father's side of the family)

One way to record a family history is by drawing a family tree called a “pedigree.” A pedigree represents family members and relationships using standardized symbols. As patients relate information about their family history, a pedigree can be drawn much quicker than recording the information in writing and allows patterns of disease to emerge as the pedigree is drawn.

 The above pedigree includes Amy and her father’s side of the family. The females are represented by circles, and the males are represented by squares. Any person who has been diagnosed with a form of cancer is darkened in with a color or a symbol to represent the type of cancer diagnosis. Any circle or square with a line drawn through it indicates someone who is deceased. The numbers by each symbol represent the age of the person or, if he or she is deceased, the age at which he or she passed away. Amy is the circle on the far right.

Constance Murphy, APRN, CGRA, member of the National Society of Genetic Counselors

me and my Dad, July 2, 2000