Screening for Fetal Abnormalities
In the UK, the National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) recommends in its 2012 guideline on antenatal care that all pregnant women should be offered screening for fetal abnormalities as detailed by the UK National Screening Committee, (UK NSC) and its subgroup, the Fetal Anomaly Screening Programme (FASP). Worldwide, there is huge variation in the provision of antenatal screening for fetal anomalies, but where it is available, either privately or through the state, it tends to focus on the detection of aneuploidy (trisomies 13, 18 and 21) and structural abnormalities. This review summarises the already well established screening methods for fetal abnormalities and also introduces newer emerging techniques. Women conceiving by assisted reproductive technologies (ART) are faced by the same screening choices as those who conceive spontaneously, but the counselling they receive needs to take into account the method of conception and the impact that this has on the risk of anomalies, the performance of the screening tests and the attitudes of the women and their partners.
KeywordsMaternity Pregnancy Screening Multiple Down syndrome Anomaly Assisted conception Pregnancy complication
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