Common Prenatal Tests 101

Test Results

The wait for test outcomes can seem endless, but you'll probably get good news. More than 95 percent of women who have amniocentesis or CVS find out that the results don't show the disorders for which their baby was tested. A small number of couples learn that their baby does have a birth defect. While this news can be devastating, prenatal diagnosis can sometimes improve the outlook for your baby. A few disorders can be treated before birth with drug therapy, blood transfusions, or even surgery. If the baby has a condition that can't be treated prenatally, the early diagnosis permits parents to prepare emotionally and to plan with their physician the safest timing, location, and method of delivery. This can make a difference: Studies suggest that babies with spina bifida, for instance, suffer less paralysis when delivered by c-section before labor has a chance to begin.

All of these issues illustrate why it's important for pregnant women to get early prenatal care. See a doctor as soon as you know you're pregnant or even before conception to help ensure that you and your baby get the best start.

All content here, including advice from doctors and other health professionals, should be considered as opinion only. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.

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