70 answers

Should I Have an Amniocentesis??

I am 37 years old and just went through my 2nd trimester screening. Although my numbers came back "negative" and I tested out 1 in 400 for my chance of Down Syndrome, my doctor is saying it might still be a good idea to get it done this week (I am now 19 weeks pregnant). I am completely freaking out at the thought of this test, as I've had 3 D&C's within the past 4 years due to pregnancy complications. I am fearful of risking anything as a result of the amnio, but at the same time, I am over 35 and not really sure what I would do if the baby was born with a chromosome problem. HELP! I KNOW this is ultimately my decision, but the emotional stress of doing the test is killing me. I think I have post-traumatic stress from the past D&C's. Any advice you can offer would be terrific :)

1 mom found this helpful

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

I am OVERWHELMED by the number of responses and by all of your compassion. My big appointment was today, and after the extensive 3-d ultrasound, which showed no abnormalities, I didn't go through with the amnio. I am soooo incredibly relieved, and KNOW I made the right decision.

Thanks so much for your feedback.

Happy Holidays :)
I.

Featured Answers

The question, really, is what would you do with the results?

You've only got 2 options:

- abort (too late for that in this country)
- have the baby

After the baby is born if they do have downs, you can always put them up for adoption, if you didn't want to keep them. There is actually a waiting list for parents who want to adopt a Downs child, and it's rather long.

2 moms found this helpful

I think the more information you have at this "earlier" gestation, the better. A person can't say what she would or wouldn't do in a particular situation, until she is actually faced with it. I wish you the best!!!

1 mom found this helpful

Note: am not a doctor, I am married to one but I did not consult him in any way to get this answer and as such this is MY OPTION, not anyone elses... (sorry but I have to cover that being married to one)

It matters... what would you do if it came back with something wrong? Abort or nothing and have the kid anyway? If you would have the kid anyway don't get it. It does come with risks of losing the baby (not high, but still there...) and after losing so many I would not risk it myself...

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

The question, really, is what would you do with the results?

You've only got 2 options:

- abort (too late for that in this country)
- have the baby

After the baby is born if they do have downs, you can always put them up for adoption, if you didn't want to keep them. There is actually a waiting list for parents who want to adopt a Downs child, and it's rather long.

2 moms found this helpful

Ultimately this is your decision, but let me tell you my experience. I was 39 years old when I delivered and just assumed that I would need an amniocentesis. I was just like you. All my numbers came back great with no significant risk. This is what my doctor asked me "Would the outcome of the test change your mind about this pregnancy in any way?" My husband and I said absolutely not. So there was our answer. My doctor felt that the risk of miscarriage due to the amminocentesis was greater than the benefit of the test. Two years ago we had a very healthy and beautiful baby boy. I would not change a thing! Go with your gut. Trust yourself and love your baby.

2 moms found this helpful

As you mentioned, only you can make this choice! But, ask yourself if the result of an amnio would change anything? If you would not consider terminating the pregnancy, then there is no point in taking the risk. I tested for a 1 in 100 chance for Downs and my son was born totally healthy...I did not have the amnio because it wouldn't have changed anything for us....we would have had the baby either way. My doctor also mentioned that most babies with Downs have other significant markers in the womb that would have showed in an ultrasound.

2 moms found this helpful

I delivered 3 weeks shy of turning 40 and the doctors made me feel like it was a freaking miracle that I was able to have a baby and keep it without it being deformed or something. I think they have to do that for lawsuits. I decided not to test b/c I was too worried about losing the baby. My son is fine by the way. But I knew that even if he wasn't I wasn't going to do a D&C or anything, so I just hoped for the best and enjoyed my pregnacy. If you don't feel comfortable with something, DO NOT DO IT! Good luck b/c I know it is so stressful. Did they do the neckfold count by ultrasound? That did nothing to the baby and made me feel better.Hang in there..1 out of 400, not that big!

1 mom found this helpful

I just have to say you have been waiting along time and have gone through several lost babies correct?
Why would you do anything to possibly interfere with this baby's development? Would you abort this baby if it had complications? A baby is a baby and no matter how they come and they are a gift.
I don't mean to sound harsh, just relax and enjoy the pregnancy. All doctors will of course recommend testing to cover thier butts but you do not have to do it.
It is invasive in my opinion.
I had my last baby at 41 and my first had special needs and we never did any testing with any of my kids. Yes, there could have been other issues but i think you need to be assured that if this baby is meant to be you will be able to handle anything that comes along. We never know what we can handle until it is upon us.
Relax, enjoy this baby and embrace it and let him/her know you love it know matter what.
Please know i hear the fear and see the stress the last few years have put on you. It sounds traumatic and scary and i am so sorry that you have had to go through that.
I will be praying for you.

1 mom found this helpful

Your decision really should have everything to do with what you would do if the test results were positive. If you decide you would keep this baby no matter what, then why do the test?
I had the same thing happen with my second pregnancy at 41. My husband and I chose to have the amnio because if it were positive, we would not keep the pregnancy. The test was very easy, slight pressure but it was over quickly. The waiting for the results was the hardest part. Test came back negative and we also found out we were having another boy.
But really, if we had made the decision that we would keep the pregnancy no matter what, then we wouldn't have bothered with the test.
Good luck with your pregnancy..good luck no matter what your choice is. Sending you blessings!

1 mom found this helpful

No one can make this decision but you. However, I can share my experiences: I had an amnio with both of my pregnancies and had absolutely no problems at all. Not surprising, the first one was the worst...I was scared out of my mind! In fact, I was so scared that I barely felt it, believe it or not. The second one was just fine. I knew what to expect, it was just uncomfortable, and it wasn't as big a deal as the first.

I had some cramping afterward. The same amount I have with my period. Plus, since it is a somewhat traumatic event, you will want to rest for a day after. If for nothing else, just for a mental break!

One thing to remember about the statistics they give you (I think it was 1:5 result in miscarriage, or something like that): this is a National statistic based upon every anmio performed in the U.S. This includes amnios performed by under-trained OBs that don't have much experience. I went to the Maternal-Fetal specialists at my hospital to help ensure I had a Doctor who specializes in these types of procedures.

Very best of luck with your decision.

1 mom found this helpful

My friend is 40, had the test done, everything checked out fine. The baby was born at 30 weeks with Charge Syndrome (a rare form of Downs). She began her first two months of life in the hospital. So I have seen how difficult it can be to have a baby with special needs.

Her baby is now seven months old and has inspired us all. She has been through so much and takes delight in small things...just like any other baby. It's obvious that she actually can see and hear (Some people with Charge can actually be deaf and blind...) and her illnesses are getting less frequent and she is eating better and getting stronger. I think what is liberating about this child is that she is not compared to the "average" baby ever...each day has been taken minute by minute...isn't this a lesson we can all learn from? Who are we to even say what is "normal" and what is not? Just because we think we are "normal."

To me an amnio is there to create anxiety and fear. And they are not even 100% accurate.

Congratulations on your pregnancy and good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

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