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Doctor insights on: Preparing For Amniocentesis

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What will amniocentesis be like?

What will amniocentesis be like?

A 'pinch' or 'ouch'?: Typical method: consent is obtained; questions answered. Ultrasound is used to find best location for needle. Iodine is wiped on skin. Ultrasound is placed on abdomen again. Skin may be numbed by injection. Amniocentesis needle (long but thin) is inserted through abdominal wall into amniotic sac. Syringe is attached; fluid is withdrawn. Heartbeat is checked. Skin is cleaned. Instructions are given. ...Read more

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Dr. Monica Popov
334 doctors shared insights

Amniocentesis (Definition)

Amniocentesis is a procedure used to draw a sample of the amniotic fluid that surrounds and cushions the baby in the womb. This fluid contains cells that have been sloughed off of the developing fetus. Amniocentesis is most often used to detect genetic abnormalities, though the results can also reveal the baby's sex, gauge lung maturity (if done close to term), detect amniotic fluid infections, or ...Read more


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What information do I have to bring along to do the amniocentesis?

What information do I have to bring along to do the amniocentesis?

Must-have info: Patients should always be asked their blood type when they go for an amniocentesis. It is best to have a copy of that to share. If rh negative, always remind the doctor and nurse before you leave. ...Read more

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Where do I go to get an amniocentesis done?

Where do I go to get an amniocentesis done?

Depends on reason: Amniocentesis is the procedure by which fluid is removed from the amniotic sac. It is done to study chromosomes, perform genetic tests, check lung maturity, etc. In general, it is performed by an obgyn specialist or a maternal-fetal medicine subspecialist in the office or clinic. It might also be performed on labor and delivery or the antepartum ward. Ask the OB provider what is best in your case. ...Read more

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Can a dr make you get an amniocentesis done if you don't want to?

Can a dr make you get an amniocentesis done if you don't want to?

No: Any medical procedure has potential risk to it. No doctor can force you to have something done. We can encourage you and explain why we think something should be done, but not force you. ...Read more

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Is the amniocentesis a risky thing to do?

Depends,but low risk: Amniocentesis done by an expert is low risk. The main risk is rupture of membranes that often is related to the ultra-structure of the membrane in a given pregnancy. The small risk should be matched with desired benefits; expert counseling can put the risk/benefit in perspective. Seek advice from geneticist and maternal fetal medicine specialist. ...Read more

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What can I expect to happen during amniocentesis?

What can I expect to happen during amniocentesis?

Steps for amnio: Consent is obtained; questions are answered. Ultrasound is used to find best location for needle. Iodine is wiped on skin. Ultrasound is placed on abdomen again. Skin may or may not be numbed by injection. Amniocentesis needle (long but thin) is inserted through abdominal wall into amniotic sac. Syringe is attached; fluid is withdrawn. Heartbeat is checked. Skin is cleaned. Instructions are given. ...Read more

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What should I expect during amniocentesis?

What should I expect during amniocentesis?

Step-by-step amnio: Consent is obtained; questions are answered. Ultrasound is used to find best location for needle. Iodine is wiped on skin. Ultrasound is placed on abdomen again. Skin may or may not be numbed by injection. Amniocentesis needle (long but thin) is inserted through abdominal wall into amniotic sac. Syringe is attached; fluid is withdrawn. Heartbeat is checked. Skin is cleaned. Instructions are given. ...Read more

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What is amniocentesis?

What is amniocentesis?

Amnio is a procedure: Amniocentesis is the procedure during which a long, slim needle is inserted through the prenant woman's abdominal and uterine walls and through the membranes of the amniotic sac, and fluid is aspirated/drawn into a syringe attached to that needle. Fluid can be studied for chromosomes (karyotype) or special genetic disorders, for infection, for lung maturity and for other conditions of baby or mom. ...Read more

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Are there any risks to the amniocentesis procedure?

Yes.: As with any procedure, there are risks. Possible complications include direct or indirect fetal injury, rupture of membranes, infection, & miscarriage. Maternal injury and direct injury to the fetus are especially rare. Timing also affects risk-- amniocentesis done before 15 weeks carries a higher risk of complications. Second trimester amniocentesis carries the lowest risk of fetal loss. ...Read more