the double marker test
What is the Double Marker Test
The double marker test is a screening test that is typically performed during the first trimester of pregnancy. It measures the levels of two markers in the mother’s blood human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) and pregnancy-associated plasma protein-A (PAPP-A).
* hCG is a hormone produced by the placenta during pregnancy. Its levels typically increase throughout the first trimester.
* PAPP-A is a protein produced by the placenta and fetus. Its levels typically peak around 10 to 14 weeks of pregnancy.
The double marker test is used to assess the risk of chromosomal abnormalities in the fetus, such as Down syndrome, trisomy 18, and trisomy 13. These conditions are caused by an extra chromosome, which can lead to intellectual disability, physical abnormalities, and other health problems.
The double marker test is not a diagnostic test. It cannot definitively tell you whether or not your baby has a chromosomal abnormality. However, a positive result (meaning that the levels of hCG and/or PAPP-A are outside of the normal range) may indicate an increased risk of a chromosomal abnormality.
If you have a positive result on the double marker test, your doctor may recommend further testing, such as an amniocentesis or chorionic villus sampling (CVS). These tests can provide a definitive diagnosis of a chromosomal abnormality.
The double marker test is a safe and relatively painless procedure. It is typically performed in a doctor’s office or laboratory. You will need to give a blood sample, which will be sent to a lab for analysis.
The results of the double marker test will be available in a few days. If your results are normal, you can be confident that your baby is at low risk for chromosomal abnormalities. However, if your results are positive, you will need to discuss further testing with your doctor.
The double marker test is a valuable screening tool that can help identify pregnant women who may be at an increased risk of having a baby with a chromosomal abnormality. However, it is important to remember that the test is not perfect and can sometimes produce false positive results. If you have any concerns about your results, be sure to talk to your doctor.
Here are some additional things to know about the double marker test
* The test is typically performed between 11 and 14 weeks of pregnancy.
* The test is not recommended for women who are pregnant with twins or triplets.
* The test is not accurate for all women. Some women with a normal result may still have a baby with a chromosomal abnormality.
* The test is not a substitute for diagnostic testing. If you have a positive result on the double marker test, you will need to discuss further testing with your doctor.
If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact me.