First and foremost, let’s explain what complex or multifactorial disorders are in the first place, shall we?
What I discovered is the fact that nearly every disease and/or condition has a genetic component linked to it. Take for example sickle cell disease or cystic fibrosis. These conditions are mutations of a single gene. When a disease or condition is referred to as complex or multifactorial though, it means that there is not one single genetic cause, but many.
This fact applies to medical issues such as heart disease diabetes and obesity. These issues are also associated with lifestyle choices and environmental factors linked to the multiple gene issues already present in the system. This is why the term multifactorial or complex is associated with these types of conditions.
The good and bad thing is that although many times these medical issues and diseases can be passed down to family members, there is no clear-cut pattern of inheritance. This means that it may be difficult to determine if your client got these diseases from a family member or not although at an extreme age it may be considered to be inherent.
Since multifactorial medical conditions are difficult to detect, this makes them difficult to study and treat as well since many of the specific factors that can cause the issues have not yet been identified. If the condition was determined at an earlier age, some surgeries or procedures may be possible, but as age advances, it is not always very wise as other health issues become big factors in the game.
In order to show your clients that With Age Comes Respect, you can convey to them that research is an ongoing thing – especially when major contributing genes for many common complex disorders exist and are known about.