Amniocentesis Test: Procedure, Risks, Benefits and Other FAQs

Amniocentesis Test in Pregnancy

What is Amniocentesis?

Amniocentesis is a medically related procedure that includes removal of amniotic fluids from uterus for conducting antenatal test. Process involves collecting a sample of amniotic fluid for testing in a lab to determine genetic conditions involving fetal abnormalities. Amniocentesis accuracy is one main reason why it is so popular.

Why Amniocentesis Test?

Amniocentesis test is for following reasons:–

  • In order to determine maturity of baby’s lungs at time of birth, amniotic fluid sample is tested
  • Genetic testing involves amniotic fluid sample for determining conditions like Down syndrome
  • Fetal infection – In very few occasions this testing is conducted to help in determining infections in fetus.
  • Treatment is done to remove excessive amount of amniotic fluid from amniotic sac
  • In order to determine baby’s gender
  • In some cases, to determine baby’s health, where mother is suffering from blood sensitization

When is Amniocentesis Test Performed?

Amniocentesis test is conducted in second trimester between fifteen-week pregnancy and twenty-week pregnancy. Sometimes, it is also accomplished in third trimester. The following guidelines are essential before performing this test

  • Drinking plenty of water is necessary as ultrasound is performed on a full bladder for correct results
  • It is prudent to avoid usage of Aspirin pills five days prior to the procedure involving amniotic fluids
  • It is necessary to avoid using Lovanox and heparin twenty four hours before test

More Info About: Different Types of Pregnancy Tests and How Accurate are These Tests

Amniocentesis Procedure

Technique for Amniocentesis procedure includes following steps:-

  • Cases where applicable transfusion looks like a risk it is better to give Rhesus immunoprophylaxis
  • The procedure is accomplished under continuous ultrasound to determine the various positions of placenta, baby and amniotic-fluid pockets
  • Belly of mother is now disinfected with antibacterial liquid to prevent infection
  • A spinal needle of twenty two gauge is injected inside through walls of abdomen and uterus to amniotic fluids in amniotic sac
  • Nearly ten to twenty ml of amniotic fluid is removed from amniotic sac
  • Cell-filtration method is used
  • Sample is now directed to a clinical lab

Risks Involved in Amniocentesis

Amniocentesis is not a process that involves pain as women barely feel discomfort at the time of injecting the needle. Still it is a risky venture and Amniocentesis risks encompass:-

  • Bleeding in uterus
  • Infection in uterus
  • It is possible that any infectious disease can be transferred during this testing from mother to child
  • Discomfort because of cramping in uterus
  • Leakage of amniotic fluid can often lead to complications of orthopedic nature
  • In case, baby decides on sudden movement at the time of inserting the needle and comes in its path, it can cause serious ramifications
  • Instances are seen where baby’s blood cells enter mother’s bloodstream, causing complications
  • Sometimes, a scar is visible on the baby’s body because of amnio test that was performed during pregnancy
  • Risk of miscarriage is higher if executed before fifteenth week of pregnancy

Benefits of Amniocentesis

Amniocentesis benefits are as follows:-

  • It gives correct results
  • Tests helps to determine the existence of any chronic ailment
  • Genetic defects are predetermined through amniocentesis tests
  • Defects relating to neural tube is successfully determined through this tests

Cost of Undertaking an Amniocentesis Test

Amniocentesis Cost is between one thousand dollars to fifteen hundred dollars.