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If my boyfriend doesn't have HD could our baby?

March 1, 2015

Huntington's Disease Youth Organization

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If my boyfriend doesn't have HD could our baby?

Q. My boyfriend and I just had a baby. His grandmother has HD and his dad also. My boyfriend has not been tested and we do not know if he has it. My question is, if my boyfriend doesn’t have it, is there still a possibility that our baby could have it?

Heather, Young Adult, USA

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A. Hi Heather,

Congratulations on the birth of your baby. If your boyfriend’s dad has HD then your boyfriend has a 50% risk of inheriting either the normal or faulty copy of the HD gene. If your boyfriend does not have the HD gene fault then he can not in turn pass it on to the baby. If he has inherited the HD gene fault, and is not showing signs yet because he has not reached the age of symptom onset, then the risk to the baby would be 50%. If your boyfriend wanted to know his genetic status it would be possible to have a predictive test to see whether or not he has inherited the HD gene fault. It is however a big step to take and timing may be an issue particularly as you have just had a baby. I hope this answers your question. I’m not sure where in the USA you are living but we would be happy to signpost you to more local information and support if you wish, or you could contact the Huntington’s Disease Society of America (HDSA)

Best wishes,