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Maternal Serum Screening

Down Syndrome, Trisomy 18 and Neural Tube Defects

Sequential Screening

Slide 18

March 2011

One of the benefits of sequential screening is that if the woman is at high risk of having an affected child, the risk information is provided right away in the first trimester so genetic counseling and diagnostic testing is provided early in the pregnancy. In addition, if the decision of pregnancy termination is made, this could be performed earlier and with fewer risks. If the woman is consider low risk after the first risk calculation, continuation to the second part of the test provides a higher detection rate.

The limitations of sequential screening include the fact that 2 samples are required for the majority of women. This could be an issue for providers that have a noncompliant population. If the patient does not return for a second blood draw, the patient will be left with no screening results. In addition, for those women that are considered to be at high risk in the first trimester, a neural tube defect calculation is not provided.

Sequential Screening


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