Amniocentesis, During your pregnancy, you may be offered an amniocentesis test to see if your baby has a genetic or chromosomal issue such as Down’s syndrome, Edwards’ syndrome, or Patau’s syndrome. It entails taking a small sample of cells from the amniotic fluid, which surrounds the unborn infant in the womb, and testing them. Keep reading to know more about amniocentesis.
Not all pregnant women are offered amniocentesis.
It’s only recommended if your baby has a higher risk of inheriting a genetic disease.
This could be due to the following reasons:
Your baby may be born with a disorder such as Down’s syndrome,
Edwards’ syndrome, or Patau’s syndrome, according to a prenatal screening test.
You have a family history of a genetic disorder, such as sickle cell disease, thalassemia, cystic fibrosis,
Or muscular dystrophy, or you have had a previous pregnancy that was affected by a genetic illness.
It’s crucial to know that if amniocentesis is offered, you don’t have to have it.
It’s entirely up to you whether or not you want it.
To assist you in making a decision, a midwife or doctor will explain what the test entails and explain the potential benefits and hazards.
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How is amniocentesis done?
Amniocentesis is typically performed between the 15th and 20th weeks of pregnancy, however it can be done at any time.
It can be done sooner, but this increases the risk of amniocentesis problems and is usually avoided.
A long, thin needle is introduced into your abdominal wall during the test, guided by an ultrasound image.
A small sample of amniotic fluid is taken for analysis after the needle is inserted into the amniotic sac that surrounds the fetus.
The exam itself takes about 10 minutes, however the consultation as a whole can take up to 30 minutes.
It is more commonly described as unpleasant than painful.
When the needle is removed, some women report feeling pressure or a sensation akin to period pain.
Obtaining your outcomes
Within three working days, you should have the first results of the test,
Which will tell you whether you have Down’s syndrome, Edwards’ syndrome, or Patau’s syndrome.
When testing for rarer conditions, the findings can take three weeks or longer to come back.
If your test reveals that your baby has a genetic or chromosomal problem, you will be thoroughly informed about the ramifications.
Most of the disorders discovered by amniocentesis have no solution, so you’ll have to weigh your alternatives carefully.
You have the option of continuing your pregnancy while obtaining knowledge about the disease so that you are completely prepared.
Related: Early pregnancy discharge in detail
What are the dangers of an amniocentesis procedure?
The risks and potential consequences will be discussed with you before you decide to have amniocentesis.
Miscarriage, defined as the loss of a pregnancy in the first 23 weeks, is one of the most serious hazards linked with amniocentesis.
There are also some other dangers, such as infection or the need to repeat the process since the original sample could not be adequately tested.
All in all, remember that, amniocentesis has a higher chance of creating difficulties if performed before the 15th week of pregnancy, which is why the test is only performed after this period.
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