Family disease tree assigment

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Unit 1 focuses on the health status of your core family (parents, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, grandparents, nieces and nephews). You will collect relevant health information for each family member. All of the health information will be presented on a family health tree, and you are encouraged to be creative. After assembling the family health tree, you will examine it for lifestyle risk factors and disease patterns. If particular diseases or disorders run through several members of the family, you will investigate that disease (using textbooks, professional peer-reviewed journals, and Internet sources) to determine what risk factors are associated with the disease and whether or not there is a known genetic or familial predisposition. Based on the analysis of health conditions and risk factors occurring on both sides of your family (maternal and paternal), you will then write a summary of your findings in a research paper and develop personal risk-reduction measures. Read the chapters in Unit 1 so that you can plan your data collection accordingly. This project should be completed over the duration of the course and in conjunction with the other units. It is recommended that you complete the data collection phase of the project by the time you reach unit 5. Following Unit 5, you should assemble your family tree, and then write the research paper.

Family Health Tree Details:

The family health tree is a major assignment and will take considerable effort throughout the entire course. You should spend the first portion of the course collecting data, followed by assembling your tree, and finally writing the paper during the latter part of the course. You will be graded on the following:


Your family tree should include the information below for you and your children, as well as your parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles, nieces, and nephews.

(Note: Use the data collection forms to help you stay organized.)

·Date of birth


·Physical description (height and weight: short/average/tall and underweight/normal/overweight/obese)

·Health behaviors

o smoking/nonsmoking

o alcohol consumption

o diet patterns (high fat, low fat, low fiber)

o exercise

o drug use/abuse/addiction

·Diseases and date of onset/diagnosis

·Other related health conditions (includes surgeries)

·If deceased, the cause of death and age (if death is caused by disease, also include age of onset).

Organization of family tree

You will be graded on the following:

·Use of symbols

·Use of color

·Explanatory key

·Easy to read and interpret

Summary paper

·Include the following in your paper:

·Description of the disease

·Risk factors associated with the disease

·Known hereditary links, genetic and/or environmental interactions associated with the disease

·Your level of risk, including the number and type of relatives with the disease (first- or second-degree) and early or late onset

·Risk-reduction measures recommended in the professional literature that might be prudent for you to take, based upon your findings. Also discuss the results from your behavior change contract from Unit 1 and how that contributes to your risk-reduction measures.

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