What is Prenatal Genetic Testing?
Genetic Counseling is the collection of your detailed personal and family history in order to assess your personal risk and discuss genetic testing options. Through blood and tissue tests Franciscan Health’s genetic counselors identify genetic disorders and obtain a more precise estimate of your potential prenatal complications.
Considering prenatal genetic testing
If there is a family history of a birth defect or genetic disorder, your doctor may recommend that you meet with a maternal and fetal medicine physician or a genetic counselor. Franciscan Health’s genetic counselors provide specialized counseling for patients of advanced maternal age as well as those with positive maternal serum screening results or abnormalities identified on an ultrasound examination.
You should consider prenatal genetic counseling if:
- You will be 35 or older at delivery
- You have a history multiple pregnancy losses (miscarriages) or a stillbirth
- You have a medical condition that is associated with an increased risk of birth defects (e.g. diabetes)
- Maternal serum screening indicated that your baby is at increased risk for Down syndrome (trisomy 21), Edwards Syndrome (trisomy 18) or spina bifida
- An ultrasound examination has detected a birth defect in the developing baby
- You or your partner has a family history of a genetic condition, birth defect or intellectual disability
- You or your partner has had a positive screen for cystic fibrosis, Tay-Sachs disease, sickle cell anemia or another genetic condition
- You have been exposed to certain medications or other agents during your pregnancy that may cause birth defects such as alcohol, street drugs, chemicals or infection