DNA Test - Chicago, IL
Health Street provides DNA tests and legal paternity testing in Chicago, Illinois at 3 conveniently located testing laboratories. Call (312) 260-1147 or schedule online. We offer legal paternity tests, sibling studies, grandparent DNA tests, avuncular (aunt or uncle) testing, and postmortem DNA testing to determine if people are biologically related.
Set up DNA testing appointments online. Test results can be used in court for child support or to change a birth a certificate; it can also be used for simple peace of mind. Appointments can be scheduled together or separately. Legal DNA tests are done by cheek swab at our testing centers. We can also extract DNA samples from hair follicles, fingernails, and other specimens.
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Paternity Testing in Chicago, Illinois
There are several types of DNA testing services that are offered at our Chicago testing centers to validate close family relationships. The most commonly ordered DNA test is a legal paternity test to conclusively establish whether or not a man is the biological father of a child. Health Street's 21 marker DNA paternity testing is the state of the art. Our paternity test results are statistically conclusive at the rate of 99.9% or greater.
Other DNA Tests
Relationship Tests to validate grandparent to grandchild, siblings, half-siblings, aunts, and uncles:
DNA tests such as sibling or avuncular studies, can sometimes come back with a result of less than 95% certainty. This is normal, especially if only two parties participate in the test. Adding an additional close relative to the test helps us learn more about the family's DNA composition and typically leads to a more conclusive result.
Specimens we can test for DNA
The easiest and most reliable way to perform a genetic sample collection for a paternity test is by a swab of the inner cheeks. These skin cells, known as buccal cells, rub off easily onto cotton swabs and remain in place, to be extracted by our testing laboratories for anlalysis.
Other specimens, such as hair follicles, fingernails, and garments that might contain someone's DNA, can also undergo lab testing to see if there is a match. These non-standard DNA tests are done by registering online for an Alternative Specimen DNA Test (Nails, Teeth, Fabric). Once registered, you ship the DNA sample to our lab. We'll attempt to extract the DNA and compare it to a cheek swab of the other party.
Legal DNA Tests vs. "Peace of Mind" At-Home Tests
When deciding which type of DNA test is right for you, consider first what you might do with the results. In order for the results to hold up in court, the DNA specimen must be collected at a clinic using strict chain of custody procedures. The DNA testing technicians at our Chicago test centers are trained to follow guidelines that ensure that the results can be used for legal purposes.
The results of our legal DNA tests can be used for any legal purpose:
Home tests offer more flexibility:
Home DNA tests are specimens containing DNA (or possible DNA) that are shipped to us for analysis. The results of these home tests cannot be used in court (since there is no way to prove whose specimens were actually sent). However, the tests are just as accurate and can provide peace of mind. At-home DNA tests also offer a lot more flexibility.
In addition to commonly mailed in DNA specimens like hair follicles, we can also extract DNA from other bodily fluids. We can even try and lift the DNA left on items like clothing, a toothbrush, or a straw. If we can get the DNA from the alternative item, we can then compare it to another person to see if they are related. Some examples include:
How to schedule a DNA Test in Chicago IL
Scheduling a DNA test at one of our Chicago clinics is simple and fast, and we often have appointments available in the same week, though it's always helpful to schedule in advance to make sure you get the time you want. We have clinics in Chicago, plus many more throughout Illinois and across the United States. During registration, we'll show you the nearest locations so you can choose the one that's most convenient. You'll pick the times and days that you prefer.
You can set up separate appointments for each of the people being tested, either at the same location or at different locations. You'll get an email and text message with your appointment information. There is no fee if you need to change the time or location of a DNA test appointment at any time.
How long it takes to get results of a DNA test
Paternity tests conducted at one of our Chicago facilities typically take about a week to come back. Other relationship tests, such as sibling studies, can take a few days longer to come back. When the results are ready, you are notified immediately via email. Then, the hard copies of the paperwork are sent afterward via regular mail.
The DNA test appointment - what to expect and what to bring
The appointment itself only takes about 15 minutes. The specimen collection process is a simple and painless cheek swab. No needles are used. When you're being tested at our Chicago clinic, you'll be asked to provide fingerprints and to show photo identification. We'll also take pictures of the people being tested so that the final report will include legal assurances of who was actually tested.
For infants, hospital discharge papers qualify as identification. Otherwise, a birth certificate or social security card can be used as ID for a child. No other preparations are required for this appointment.
Does the mother need to be present at a paternity test?
If a man is considered the legal father of a child, then the mother does not have to be present or give consent for paternity testing. However, if he is not currently considered the legal father, then he cannot sign for the child. Therefore, the mother does need to be there. If neither parent is available, other legal guardians can bring the child so long as they have the right to make medical decisions on the child's behalf.
DNA testing if one party is not in Chicago
The two parties testing (for example: father and child) do not have to be tested at the same time or even at the same location. We have many clinics across Illinois as well as nationwide, so we can test one party in Chicago and the other party anywhere else in the USA. The specimens are then matched up in the lab for analysis.
Health Street works strictly with AABB Certified labs for DNA testing. All specimens that are collected in Chicago or elsewhere are shipped securely from our testing locations to a nationally certified laboratory.
DNA Testing Leads to 15 New Half Siblings for One Chicago Woman
Chicago resident Morgan Richardson knew she was conceived via a sperm donor more than thirty years ago. DNA testing revealed, however, that she wasn't the only one. Since taking a DNA test only four years earlier, she has connected with 15 of her half siblings. Some were excited to meet, while others who didn't know how they were conceived struggled with accepting the truth.
Now Richardson couldn't be happier to be learning about her biological family. She says, "Finding these people I didn't know I was related to, I feel a lot more grounded and more sure of myself. It's like I discovered a limb I didn't know I had."
Chicago Women Surprised to Find Her DNA Test Results Match Her Organ Donor
Holly Becker was confused when her DNA test results matched her with a new relative -- a new mother or daughter, in fact. Dania Davey contacted Becker with the question, though both women were already sure the results had to be wrong. DNA testing for immediate family links is usually over 99% accurate, however. They soon found out that Becker matched with Davey not because the test was wrong, but because the wrong DNA was tested.
Becker became severely ill with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma about twenty years prior to taking the test in her hometown of Chicago. As part of her treatment, she received a donation of umbilical-cord blood. Davey had donated the umbilical cord blood of her son around the same time, too. It turned out that the test picked up the DNA of Becker's transplant (and Davey's son) instead of her own, a complication that can occur in people who have had an umbilical-cord blood or bone marrow transplant. Becker and Davey solved the mystery. This time, DNA testing revealed an old donor instead of a new family member.
DNA Testing Experience
Health Street has been performing genetic tests nationally since 2010; our first DNA test in Chicago, IL was in July of 2011. Since then, our Chicago clinic locations have completed 50 DNA tests for local residents at our Chicago specimen collection sites, plus thousands more in other Illinois locations and across the USA.