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Prenatal Diagnosis: Essence and Importance

News

16.08.2023

Expecting a child is a unique, energizing, rejuvenating, and emotional experience. For nine whole months, parents anxiously wait to welcome the new member of their family, who will inevitably change their lives. In order for this moment to be truly unique and filled with happiness, it is extremely important to prepare for it. Part of this preparation is prenatal diagnosis.

What Is This Diagnosis, and Why Is It Important?

Prenatal examinations are a group of methods that help to detect various types of possible damage to the fetus as early as the beginning of pregnancy. Visiting the office for women’s consultation every month is undoubtedly important to follow fetus development. The use of modern prenatal diagnostics could also provide reliable information about the absence or presence of possible disorders in the genes, chromosomes, skeletal structure, and many other abnormalities of the embryo.

Modern medicine provides reliable methods to make an accurate diagnosis of developmental abnormalities. Thus, in the earliest months, the humane and informed decision to terminate the pregnancy can be made with minimal risk to the mother.

For the parents who have to take it, the moment is undoubtedly extremely difficult and painful. However, it cannot be compared to the shock they would receive when they are told at birth that the baby has a disability. Therefore, making the most of the possibilities provided by various prenatal health centers, offering the peace of mind of expectant mothers, and supporting fathers is extremely important.

What Types of Tests Can Be Done on You?

Our intention is not to list a bunch of complicated medical terms and manipulations. However, it is important to familiarize yourself with the type of prenatal diagnosis procedures and ensure that they are perfectly safe.

Biochemical Screening

One of the most common problems with the fetus is a chromosomal disbalance. In most cases, it results in a baby with Down syndrome, Edwards syndrome, Turner syndrome, or Klinefelter syndrome. You may be assigned a biochemical screening at week 12 of pregnancy to ensure no such danger for your future child. In 90% of cases, an ultrasound examination can detect the problem.

Additional Research

In the period between 14 and 19 gestation weeks, a second one is made in case of questionable results from the biochemical screening. Then parameters such as bone length, head circumference, characteristic bone in the nose, etc., are tracked by ultrasound examination. The combination of these measurements gives an up to 80% accurate prediction of fetal damage. When necessary, blood tests are conducted on the future mother. Changes in the concentration of some indicators confirm or reject doubts from the screening. The accuracy of the analysis is 95%. For a 100% sure result, a biopsy and examination of the amniotic fluid can be prescribed.

Many other tests help to prove the lack or the risk of disabilities, such as encephalitis, the curvature of the spine, disorders in the heart muscle, diseases of the exchange, and several other pathologies.

There is often a hereditary factor in genetic disorders, so this type of fetal diagnosis is an absolute must. Maternal age is also a critical factor, especially if there have been previous problematic pregnancies.

Our advice is not to wait for your gynecologist to detect unpleasant symptoms to proceed with tests; they must be conducted as a preventative measurement. Every step and procedure will be explained to you in detail and carried out only if you wish. Specialists are always ready to give their competent advice, but the decision is yours.

Be the active party, seek information and help from specialists to ensure a peaceful pregnancy and the birth of a healthy child.

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