NIPT identifying more pregnancies affected by Down syndrome

Susan Mitchell, Health Correspondent, analyses the advent and impact of new-generation pre-natal tests.

Susan Mitchell

Deputy Editor and Health Editor @susmitchellsbp
13th July, 2014

Prenatal testing is a routine part of pregnancy care in much of the world, with women offered tests to evaluate the health of their pregnancies.

Tests to screen for potential genetic and chromosomal abnormalities, such as amniocentesis and chorionic villu sampling (CVS) are very accurate but invasive. In amniocentesis, a needle is inserted into the amniotic sac. These tests carry a small risk of miscarriage and are done later in pregnancy.

An amniocentesis is performed...

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