trying to decide on an amnio — The Bump
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trying to decide on an amnio

they found an echogenic focus at my anatomy scan at 21 weeks and my dr informed me of this yesterday at 24 weeks. She told me the sequential screening came back "negative" but she did not give me the actual numbers.  I am scheduled for a level II ultrasound next week.  I am going to be 32 years old at the time of delivery and I am trying to decide about the value, if any, of having an amnio done.  For anyone who decided to have one, how did you make that decision?

Re: trying to decide on an amnio

  • I didn't ever have one for either of my kids. My ds was dx with autism, obviously not detectable by amnio. But, anyway, my decision was strictly based on the fact that the results would have no bearing on whether or not we would keep the child. Some people choose to do one, for reasons such as yours, where there may be some suspected issues and you would like to plan ahead as much as possible before the birth. Just my two cents :0).
  • I had decided against an amnio at 26 weeks and ultimately ended up deciding to have one at 30 weeks.  If it were a risk of down syndrome, I would not have had an amnio as it would not have mattered.  I ended up having one because the doctor suspected Trisomy 13 and we wanted to be prepared if we were having a baby that might not survive the delivery or would not live long after birth.  That was something we felt we needed to be prepared for.  Fortunately the amnio came back normal.  Also, I felt better having the amnio late as it presents a small risk of early delivery and I felt less worried at 30 weeks. The actual procedure was significantly easier than waiting for the results. In fact, it felt pretty routine.

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  • I refused the quad screen w/ both of my pregnancies with the statement, "if my baby has anything I'm not going to abort, so why bother."  Now that I have a son with Down syndrome, if I were to have any more kids, I'd be tested, and probably have the amnio if recommended by my doc ONLY to know exactally what we'd need (if anything) immeadiately after birth.  After my son was dx....I felt so ignorant having refused testing.  We were lucky that the hosptial I delivered at had a level 2 NICU, and that my son's medical needs didn't require anything more...but it could've been different. 

    Short story long....I guess it depends on what they are looking for, and what immeadiate medical attention your baby may need after delivery.

    Hope that makes sense...and helps.

  • I agree with PP's in that it depends on what you might be looking for and if it needs you to be prepared at birth for difficulties.

    At our 20 week ultrasound, they found a heart defect and recommended we get an amnio. We knew we wouldn't terminate the pregnancy in any case, but we wanted to know to be prepared if their were any chromosomal abnormalities. It turns out, he had 22q deletion syndrome. Now, the syndrome didn't change a lot for the birth, but it gave us time to research and find out what we were going to be dealing with. The heart defect was very severe and that is what made us change course on where we would deliver and how often he was monitored before birth. 

    As I have stated before, getting an amnio is a very personal decision, but I definitely think the knowledge outweighs the minimal risk. The amnio was no big deal for me, and if done properly by an experienced doc under ultrasound, the risk is very minimal.  

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  • I had my amnio done at 28 weeks this time around because ds has a heart defect and my AFP was low & DS has down's. I am happy I did it because I have been able to mourn what I thought would be and fall in love with Sean as he is. He also has echogenic kidneys, but that could mean something or nothing. 

    I did not have an amnio with Meredith, but she had no markers at all.  

  • I had an amnio with DD at 17 weeks, we were given 1:5 and then 1:45 odds for Down syndrome based on blood work and my NT scan done at 12 weeks. For me, the risk of Ds was higher than the risk of miscarriage and I am a need to know person. I couldn't worry the rest of my pregnancy, I would have gone crazy and driven my family nuts in the process.

    For me, I wanted to know b/c in the beginning I was going to terminate if DD had T18 or Ds. Obviously we didn't terminate in the end, but it was one of the deciding factors for me, moreso than just having to know.

    I think it really comes down to needing to know for sure or being able to wait it out. I personally couldn't wait, but I know a lot of moms who did wait it out and don't regret it. Good luck with your choice, I wish it was as clear cut as A or B, but once you decide you will know you made the right choice for you.

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  • image jptimestwo:

    I refused the quad screen w/ both of my pregnancies with the statement, "if my baby has anything I'm not going to abort, so why bother."  Now that I have a son with Down syndrome, if I were to have any more kids, I'd be tested, and probably have the amnio if recommended by my doc ONLY to know exactally what we'd need (if anything) immeadiately after birth.  After my son was dx....I felt so ignorant having refused testing.  We were lucky that the hosptial I delivered at had a level 2 NICU, and that my son's medical needs didn't require anything more...but it could've been different. 

    Short story long....I guess it depends on what they are looking for, and what immeadiate medical attention your baby may need after delivery.

    Hope that makes sense...and helps.

    I would want to know for this reason. My nephew was born with a major heart defect.  Knowing in advance that he did not have other involvement (a chromo problem that generally accompanies the defect) helped the doctors plan for his surgery within 24 hours of birth.  It would have also been quite shocking for my SIL on top of the immediate transfer to another hospital for open heart surgery at birth to have had to deal with all that.  I have a good friend with a surprise DS baby, it would have just been a lot easier if she had known in advance. She feels like she is trying to catch up all the time.  Her son is 6 months old and she spends a great deal of time trying to find out information, which would have been easier to do before the birth, when the baby is nice and quiet :-)

    My son was 1 in 3 for DS and I have the CVS.  I paid extra to get the FISH results and it was worth every penny.  It was very hard to wait.

  • I would do the amino.  We had a high risk for downs.  It was huge for me for piece of mind either way.  DS did not have downs thank goodness, but it would have been a long pregnancy not knowing.
    Baby #1: 19 cycles, failed IUI, and 1 + IVF 3-5-07
    Baby #2: 12 cycles, 1 failed FET, natural miracle but m/c at 9 weeks then another natural miracle that stuck! 9-30-09

    TTC #3 - 4 cycles - no BFP yet!
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