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Screening for Down’s Syndrome

Screening for Down’s Syndrome

Downs syndrome is a genetic disorder which is seen very early in your pregnancy. It occurs when the baby is first forming in the initial stage. A child with downs syndrome has extra copy of chromosome 21. Normal people have 23 pairs of chromosomes. Pregnant mothers do not have to worry because downs syndrome can be screened even at the early stages of pregnancy.

When can the downs syndrome be screened?

Screening tests are available during the first and second trimesters of pregnancy for downs syndrome. These tests can tell the gynecologist if the baby is at the risk of acquiring Down syndrome. In such cases, further tests can be done to prove the diagnosis.

What are the tests available for downs syndrome screening?

There are 2 types of screening tests available at pregnancy specialist doctor to know if a baby might be at risk of having Down syndrome. Also, there are further detailed diagnostic tests to confirm the results.

First trimester combined screening –

It involves a blood test and an ultrasound scanning in maternity hospital.

There are two types of ultrasound scanning offered –

  • A dating scan that can be done between weeks 8 and 14 of pregnancy.
  • Nuchal translucency scan that can be done between 11 weeks and 13 weeks and 6 days of pregnancy.

For screening of Downs’s syndrome, the dating scan and the nuchal translucency scan can be done at the same time somewhere between 11 weeks and 13 weeks.
The blood test is between 9 and 12 weeks.

The blood test report, your age and the nuchal translucency measurement together show the chances of your baby having Down syndrome.

Second trimester screening –

This test is for women who could not have the combined screening test in their early pregnancy. The blood test is done between 14 and 20 weeks.

It is the maternal serum screening test (MSS) and it measures the proteins associated with pregnancy. The report, your age and your individual chances will tell if your baby has Down syndrome.

Diagnostic test –

If there are chances of your baby having downs syndrome, the best gynecologists in Chandigarh advise further diagnostic test that provides a sure answer.