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Non-invasive Prenatal Testing 


Non-invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) is a way to screen for some specific genetic conditions in pregnant women who are at a high risk for chromosome abnormalities.  NIPT is performed through a routine blood draw from 10 weeks of pregnancy throughout gestation.  Results are available in approximately eight to ten days and there are no risks to the pregnancy for miscarriage.  NIPT has the ability to detect chromosome abnormalities, like Down syndrome with greater accuracy than other screening tests however, it is not 100%.  NIPT can miss a problem that is present (false negative) or it can incorrectly show a high risk for a condition that is not present (false positive).  Results should be carefully interpreted in conjunction with other demographic factors such as age, as well as family history and ultrasound findings.  Additionally, NIPT does not detect all genetic conditions or risk factors that might be present in a pregnancy therefore, diagnostic testing may be more appropriate for some women.  A medical professional should review the results with you.  

NIPT routinely screens for conditions such as Down syndrome, trisomy 18 and trisomy 13.  Screening for gender, sex chromosome abnormalities and other genetic conditions may be included.  Even though it is not a diagnostic test, NIPT has been shown to be the most sensitive screening test for Down syndrome.  More information is needed regarding the accuracy of screening for other chromosomal abnormalities.  Prenatal screening options are evolving rapidly, therefore you should ask your medical provider what conditions are included in your testing.