What To Think About
- Normal results from amniocentesis do not guarantee that your fetus will be healthy.
- Amniocentesis can be done to help you prepare if your fetus has a possible birth defect or to help you make a decision about ending the pregnancy if a serious problem is found.
- In very rare cases, amniocentesis may be done before 15 weeks of pregnancy. This is rare, because there may be greater risks to your fetus. Talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of early amniocentesis.
- Amniocentesis can't be done easily if the amount of amniotic fluid is very small or if the placenta is in front of your fetus.
- Reference Chorionic villus sampling (CVS) Opens New Window is another test that can find many fetal problems. CVS can be done earlier in pregnancy than amniocentesis, and results are ready sooner. For more information, see the topic Reference Chorionic Villus Sampling (CVS).
- Amniocentesis has a very small chance of causing bleeding that could lead to mixing your blood and your fetus's. So if you have Rh-negative blood, you will be given a vaccine (RhoGAM) to prevent Rh sensitization, which could harm your fetus if he or she has Rh-positive blood.
- Amniotic fluid has cells that have been shed by your developing fetus. The cells are checked for the number and size of chromosomes (karyotype) to see if there are any problems. For more information, see the topic Reference Karyotype Test.
- If you have abnormal results from amniocentesis, you should ask your doctor or a Reference genetic counselor Opens New Window for help in making decisions about the problems your fetus may have and about continuing the pregnancy. It will also be helpful to understand your possible risks with future pregnancies.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference April 4, 2012|
|Medical Review:||Reference Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
Reference Siobhan M. Dolan, MD, MPH - Reproductive Genetics