Amniocentesis involves the removal of a small amount of amniotic fluid from the sac surrounding the fetus (“bag of water”) with the use of a thin needle inserted through the mother’s abdomen and uterus. It is performed after 15 weeks of pregnancy.
Ultrasound guidance is used throughout the procedure. The fluid is cultured and fetal chromosomes are examined and results are available in about 10 to 14 days.
This test is more than 99 percent accurate in diagnosing chromosomal abnormalities. Additional testing of the fluid can diagnose more than 98 percent of open neural tube defects.
The main risks to this procedure include complications leading to miscarriage in less than 0.5 percent (1 in 200 cases).
Physicians offering this service include:
This service is available at: