Medical Procedures

Amniocentesis Test: Procedure, Risks, Benefits and Other FAQs

Amniocentesis Test in Pregnancy
Written by Stephanie McClane

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.

About the author

Stephanie McClane

Hi, I’m Stephanie. I graduated college with a business degree and a minor in biology. I met my husband at a business convention and was happily marriage and pregnant within the first two years after saying the words “ I do”.

Jennifer is the eldest of the three. Being pregnant with her, my first, I researched everything pregnancy related and read nearly every book. Giving birth to Anthony and Matty seemed more natural and less stressful the third time around.

I’m happy to share what knowledge I have gathered and learn new things from other mothers. From morning sickness to Anencephaly, or potty training to thumb sucking, I have books and resource guides to share.