Routine blood and urine checks are common throughout pregnancy, and most moms-to-be also have at least one ultrasound. Sometimes, your doctor might suggest additional testing.
|Chorionic villus sampling (CVS)||First trimester||To check for chromosomal or genetic disorders, or to determine paternity||A sample of cells is taken from the placenta using a needle.|
|Cordocentesis (Percutaneous Umbilical Cord Blood Sampling, or PUBS)||After 17 weeks of pregnancy||To diagnose chromosome abnormalities and blood disorders||Advanced-imaging ultrasound is used to locate the point where the umbilical cord enters the placenta, and a small needle is used to withdraw a sample of cord blood.|
|Amniocentesis||Second trimester||To identify certain birth defects, neural tube defects, and genetic disorders||Done under ultrasound, a small needle is used to remove a sample of fluid from the amniotic sac.|
|Maternal Serum Alpha-Fetoprotein Screening (MSAFP)||Second trimester||Screening test to determine if further testing is needed to check for fetal birth defects||Blood is drawn from a vein.|
|Biophysical Profile||After week 32 of gestation||Conducted when there is a concern about fetal health or in certain high-risk pregnancies||Non-invasive test that measures contractions and fetal heart rate. Done in combination with an ultrasound.|
Remember that just because your physician schedules these tests, it doesn't mean your baby actually has a health problem.
Nita Crighton is a registered nurse from Harding Township.