Maternal screening is a blood test available for pregnant women, that helps to predict the risk of having a baby with a chromosome condition. These chromosome conditions are Down syndrome, Edward Syndrome, Patau syndrome in which the affected babies may be born with serious permanent physical and mental disabilities.
The screening can also provide additional information about pregnancy health, such as risk for developing early-onset Preeclampsia which is Gestational Hypertension and can be severely detrimental to both the mother and the baby. Preeclampsia is treatable if detected early.
There are two serum screening tests available:
▸ First trimester screening, also known as Dual Marker test. It contains PAPPA, Free B HCG and PLGF.
▸ Second trimester screening, also known as Quadruple & Triple marker test
These screening tests give an estimate of the chance that a pregnancy is affected by a chromosomal aberration or certain developmental problems, but do not provide a definite diagnosis. They are used to separate women into ‘high risk’ or ‘low risk’ categories