Many patients benefit from referral to SLUCare's Fetal Evaluation and Testing/Genetic services. You may be a candidate if you have any of the following:
- Maternal age of 35 or older
- Previous child with chromosomal abnormality
- Previous child with structural birth defect
- Family history of neural tube defects
- Abnormal maternal serum screen
- Abnormality or suspected abnormality on ultrasound
- Recurrent unexplained pregnancy loss
- Family history of genetic or metabolic disease
All patients referred to SLUCare's Perinatal Center for testing receive genetic counseling. The one-hour session covers pregnancy and family history, the reason for testing, the risk-benefit ratio of the procedure and what the procedure will involve. When test results are abnormal, patients receive additional genetic counseling. Testing may include:
- Comprehensive ultrasound - We offer a full range of sonographic services, including fetal echocardiography and color Doppler blood flow evaluation.
- Amniocentesis - Performed at 15 to 20 weeks gestation to detect chromosomal abnormalities, open neural tube defects or single gene disorders, where indicated.
- Funicentesis/PUBS - Fetal cord blood sampling for the diagnosis and management of a variety of fetal diseases, such as anemia, thrombocytopenia and infections.
- Chorionic Villus Sampling - Performed at 10 to 12 weeks gestation to detect chromosomal abnormalities and single gene disorders.
In the unfortunate situation of fetal loss, SLUCare pediatricians and pathologists at SSM Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital can investigate the cause and provide counseling for subsequent pregnancies. Reasons for referral include:
- Two or more fetal losses
- A fetus, stillborn or liveborn, with obvious or suspected malformation or developmental abnormalities
- A family history of genetic disease or congenital abnormality
- Fetal abnormalities by ultrasound examination, when the cause is desired