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Fetal Abnormalities: When Is A Fetus Tested? - Dr. Ahdoot

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Dr. Ahdoot recalls when a fetus is checked for any genetic abnormality and other high-risk diagnoses.

Dr. Ahdoot:
We now have first and second trimester testing. Traditionally we had second trimester testing with taking blood from the mother and by ultrasound surveillance of the baby, and anatomical review of the baby, and the fluid potentially around the baby we could make judgements as to whether this is a high-risk pregnancy or not.

Now those tests can be done much earlier, or at least the testing can get started earlier in the first trimester, which allows us to avoid some other invasive procedures to perhaps make a diagnosis.

So, you might have a couple of more visits at your physician’s or obstetrician’s office or your perinatologist, but we have more modalities to make diagnoses, non-invasive diagnoses earlier now than we did say five or ten years ago.

It’s important because it gives a patient options. If you were concerned about, “I am 35 years old, 36-years old; should I undergo genetic testing?” Meaning amniocentesis, which is an invasive procedure towards the baby. Nowadays, by doing the test in the first trimester, if a high-risk situation is identified we can actually rule out or educate the patient better as to whether they should go on to have an invasive procedure or not. So there’s more testing, but it gives the patient more options at an earlier date.

About Dr. David Ahdoot, M.D.:
David Ahdoot specializes in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Saint John’s Hospital in Santa Monica, California. He attended medical school at the University of California San Diego Medical Center. Later he went on to do his internship and residency at the University of California Irvine Medical Center. With more than 16 years experience, Dr. Ahdoot is a Diplomat of the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

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