An ultrasound test called nuchal translucency increasingly is being used as a method to detect the risk that an infant will be born with Down syndrome, the Wall Street Journal reports. The test involves a blood screening followed by an ultrasound about one week later at 11 to 13 weeks' gestation to determine the size of a fetus and the thickness of its neck. (snip)
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists in January recommended that all pregnant women be offered nuchal translucency. Based on the personalized risk assessment, a woman can then decide whether to undergo a test, such as chorionic villus sampling, or an amniocentesis, both of which detect almost all cases of Down syndrome but have an increased risk of miscarriage, according to the Journal. About one in 800 infants is born with Down syndrome, the Journal reports (Wall Street Journal, 5/8).
We spend several minutes of the first prenatal visit talking with moms (and dads) about all the optional testing available to them. Thanks to ACOG, we must discuss screening to see if the parents carry the genes for CF. Thanks to a few "wrongful life" lawsuits, we must discuss maternal serum screening with all, and amniocentesis with moms over the age of 35. Now, we must also discuss the above cited 'early' Down Syndrome screening.
I work within the system, but there are many days when I just want to become an outlaw, a rebel. I won't. I realize that my rebellious reactions are not necessarily what I am called to! but I do get so very frustrated, I really do.