Family Tree

A family tree is a representation of the lineages of a particular family mainly consisting of relatives stretching as far as possibly establishable by the family. A simple family tree would basically constitute of great grand parents, grand parents, parents, siblings, cousins and so on.

With the continued complexity of modern livelihoods, development professionals in all cadres of work have opted for more details that should be included in family tree so as to be of more use (Adams, 2009). This is the basis upon which such variances of family tree as family medical tree have been suggested and used in the medical field for keeping medical information for specific families.

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This is important especially considering that there are some medical cases that are genetic and therefore follow through the family. Knowledge of this medical consideration is important and can be used for treatment and preparedness of persons in that family (Halsey, 2009). This paper talks about family medical tree by considering specific questions of interest and giving short synoptic briefs about each question as discussed below.

1. Why is it important to know your family medical history?

Knowledge of family medical history is important particularly for specific medical conditions that are genetic and therefore run through given families.

This knowledge helps in the better treatment and handling of medical conditions within the family. It helps for medical practitioners to know of conditions in the family that can be inherited or which predispose family members to certain risks (Pisacano, 2009).

2. Does knowing your family history make you more aware of personal risk factors?

Yes. Knowledge of my family medical history makes me more aware of personal risk factors that I am likely to be exposed to by the virtue of being in my family.

Knowledge of family medical history is further important because certain health related sicknesses are so prevalent in the family and therefore can be passed down to children thereby making me more prone to such sicknesses in the event that there are there. With this knowledge therefore, I can better prepare for some of these cases (Stange, Zyzanski, Jaen, Callahan, Kelly, Gillanders, et al., 1998).

3. How might being aware of your medical family history help you?

Knowledge of my medical family history has many ways in which it can be of help to me and one of the main areas is to help me in my preparation for my health.

This is important for my current preparation as well as for my future too (Stange, Zyzanski, Jaen, Callahan, Kelly, Gillanders, et al., 1998). In a time and age where insurance policies and providers are flooding the market offering all sorts of services, it is almost paramount for these providers to know some of these conditions so as to better prepare for their services they provide.

Life insurance policies mainly base most of their terms on medical conditions of persons and it is the knowledge of my family medical history that will put me at a vintage point when taking medical covers and other related insurance policies (Stange, Zyzanski, Jaen, Callahan, Kelly, Gillanders, et al., 1998).

In conclusion, family medical history is very important for the families just as much as it is important for national planning and development for countries. This in a snapshot briefly explains what family medical history is and its importance for families and its relations (Stange, Zyzanski, Jaen, Callahan, Kelly, Gillanders, et al., 1998).


Adams, B. (2009). Patient Brochure. American Board of Family Medicine, 5(10), 218- 300.

Halsey, A. (2009). Primary-Care Doctor Shortage May Undermine Reform Efforts. The Washington Post.

Pisacano, N. (2009). History of the Specialty. American Board of Family Medicine, 3 (5), 282- 291.

Stange, K., Zyzanski, S., Jaen, C., Callahan, E., Kelly, R., Gillanders, W. et al. (1998). Illuminating the ‘Black Box. Journal of Family Practice, 46(5), 377-389.


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