Introductions to Prenatal Chromosome Testing?

Chromosomes are found in the nucleus of a person’s cell. There are 46 total chromosomes per person. A male will have a chromosome of XY and a female will have a chromosome of XX. The remaining chromosomes are the same for both males and females.

Prenatal chromosome testing will provide information on missing chromosomes or more chromosomes. In both scenarios, it can cause impacts on the fetus. This microarray testing will provide you with information on the health of your fetus, such as potential disorders in the fetus, medical conditions of the fetus, or other birth defects.

There are Two Types of Prenatal Chromosome Screening Tests:

• Parental screening tests – show any genetic conditions that a parent might have. This is done through a cheek swab.
• Genetic Screening of the mother – this will provide information on brain and spine defects, Aneuploidy of the fetus, heart defects and other health defects. These can also be done through cell-free DNA testing.

Cell-free DNA testing is a test using the DNA released from the placenta. The bloodstream can then be analyzed for conditions like Down syndrome, Trisomy 13, and other conditions. Results that show a positive cell-free chromosome DNA test should have further follow-up.

Role of Chromosomes in Establishing Parental Connections

As indicated earlier, chromosome testing will help determine genetic issues in the fetus. An amniocentesis is offered to women who are about 15 – 20 weeks along in their pregnancy. Women over 35 and who are pregnant are encouraged to check for abnormal serum screening tests.

Chronic Villus Sampling (CVS) analyzes a sample from the placenta, as the fetus has the same tissue as the uterus. The chromosome test can reveal any genetic complications with the fetus due to genetic family conditions. This test needs to be followed up with blood draws to determine other potential defects.

There are Two Types of Prenatal Genetic Testing

• Screening test – This test will provide parents with information if their fetus has an aneuploidy or other disorders.
• Diagnostic test – Does your fetus have a disorder? This test will give you that information. This is done through CVS or amniocentesis.

Benefits of Chromosome Testing

Chromosome testing can provide parents benefits. However, it is the choice of a parent to make that decision. The health of the fetus is important and genetic testing is part of the pregnancy testing process.

Some families will use that information to make long-term care decisions, or sometimes, a decision will be made to terminate the pregnancy.

Some criteria that can be used to determine genetic chromosome testing are as follows:

• Is the mother over 35 years? It is recommended that the child be tested.
• Has the mother had miscarriages/stillbirths?
• Does the family have a genetic condition?
• An abnormal blood test during pregnancy
• Ultrasound results show abnormality.

Chromosome Testing vs. Paternal Testing

Chromosome testing provides information on the welfare of the fetus, whereas Paternal testing provides information about the father of the child. The tests provide 2 different information outcomes.