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Dr David
Dr David, Doctor
Category: OB GYN
Satisfied Customers: 46338
Experience:  Experienced physican trained in ob-gyn and oncology
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My wife and I are trying to decide if it's worth the risk of

Customer Question

Hello Doctor,
My wife and I are trying to decide if it's worth the risk of a miscarriage to undertake amniocentesis for the baby we're expecting in December.
1) Both other tests we've taken have shown low or no risk of Down's or other gene defects: a free cell DNA test and a nucal fold test. The Free Cell test said something like "risk is below 1 in 400" of a genetic syndrome.
2) My wife will turn 40 in September
3) We have a 3.5 year old son who is healthy and was born that way with no big complications in the pregnancy or delivery (albeit cesarean because my wife was having significant back pain in the final stages of pregnancy)
4) Our son was born when we happened to be living in the UK and doctors there never felt a need for us to do more than the nucal fold test. Part of why we're asking this question here is that our doctors here in the US are frustratingly vague on whether amniocentesis is worth undertaking - we get that it would answer the question with absolute certainty but there is that risk of miscarriage.
5) One other point to note is that it hasn't been difficult for "us" to get pregnant each time so the downside of miscarriage is also somewhat mitigated.
Many thanks!
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: OB GYN
Expert:  Dr David replied 2 years ago.
This is Dr. David
if all of your screening tests for downs like the free cell DNA test and nucal fold test show super low risks for Downs syndrome, then you don't need a amniocentesis
this is only more risk and limited additional benefit.