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how did you decide about an amnio?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

I'm 35 and my hubby and I are torn about an amnio. I had the quad blood and u/s testing and they came back negative. I'd love to hear from anyone who made the choice to have or not have an amnio. and please state your age as that is the main reason we are considering.

Thanks in advance for your help.
post #2 of 19
We chose not to have an amnio with DS - I was 36 at conception, 37 at birth.

We had had a previous loss, and it took us 8 cycles to get pregnant again. Even the small risk to the fetus (I think we were quoted 1:500 chance of fetal death) was too high a risk for us. Especially considering we would not have terminated based on the results.

We DID do the Quad screed/nuchal fold testing, and the results came back as much better than statistically for my age. There were no soft markers on the 20-week u/s that might have caused alarm.

For this babe (I am now 41), we passed on the Quad Screen. We will do an anatomy scan at 20-weeks to make sure it will be safe to birth at home. But we will NOT do an amnio unless something really major comes up. Right now, I can't think of anything that would cause me to want an amnio.

For me, the way to approach it was not "what should we do" or even "what can we learn" but "what will we do with the information we get from this test"?

I hope this was of some help to you.
post #3 of 19
I'm 35, and we did the combined screen (used to be called quad screen) and NT scan, but we would not have done the CVS (like an amnio, only earlier), except that they discovered an omphalocele at the scan, which gave us a 30% chance of trisomy 13, 18, or 21. We still wouldn't have terminated (my decision, a personal one, and I don't judge anyone else's) but we/I needed to know. 30% is too much of an uncertainty for me to live with for 5-6 months.
post #4 of 19
I was 19 when I was pregnant and I didn't get the amnio because A) I was young B) I wouldn't have terminated anyway C) there is nothing in either of our families so genetically speaking, there were no risks and D) with their ability to be wrong and the risk for fetal death even slim, it just wasn't worth it to me.

I don't know what I'd decide if I were 35+ but we plan on being done with biological babies by the time I am 25-28 so I plan on doing the same thing for each pregnancy.
post #5 of 19
I have never had an amnio and do not intend to, unless (as a PP said) there's a good indication of a problem we could learn more about with amnio. I would not terminate, anyway, and therefore the risk of harm to the baby was far too great. At 35, statistically the risks are "even" for Down syndrome versus spontaneous abortion from amnio. I don't believe that would influence my decision making, though.
post #6 of 19
With my first child we had some soft markers in our first ultrasound at 17 weeks and were sent for a level 2. If the level 2 had gone badly I would of had to have amino. I wouldn't of been able to live with the uncertainty. Luckly the level 2 went well and the doctor was able to reassure us that the baby was healthy. Of course nothing is for certain but it was enough that I stopped worrying. Its a tough decision I think a lot of it comes down to how much reassurance do you need.
post #7 of 19
I was 29 when I had my son, and the triple-screen came back at 1:23 for Down Syndrome. At the level II ultrasound, there were 2 soft markers, so I opted for the amnio, because I had to know what we were dealing with. It came back normal. I did develop preeclampsia however, which may have a correlation to abnormal screening results.

With my daughter, the triple-screen came back at 1:16, and there were no soft markers, so I chose not to have an amnio, and just knew that it meant I was going to develop preeclampsia again, and I did.

With normal screening results, I would probably never opt for an amnio just because of age, especially at 35. While the screens and ultrasounds are not 100% reliable, they are a decent and non-invasive way to see if further testing is warranted.
post #8 of 19
I'm 37 and have similar questions/concerns. After at least one loss due to chromosomal problems I feel like I need a lot of reassurance - but at what cost/risk? I think we would do an amnio if we got very worrisome NT/1st tri screen odds, or if problems were seen later at the 20wk u/s. Otherwise, no.

Bokonon - that's really interesting re pre-e and abnormal screening results. Thanks for sharing.
post #9 of 19
Did your ob or doctor go over the risks with you after your screen and ultrasound? Usually after doing those tests, they can lower your statistical odds of chromosomal disorders greatly (from one in 200 to one in 2,000, for example). If the odds of the disorders are way lower than the odds of something going wrong with the amnio (usually about 1 in 500 to 1 in 1000), then I'd suggest not doing the test.

Our risk for a certain genetic disease was 1 in 50 to 1 in 200, whereas the odds of something going wrong with the amnio was 1 in 750+. We chose the amnio.
post #10 of 19
Here's what went into my decision to have an amnio:

- Results of other tests (positive quad screen)

- Risk of miscarriage from amnio _for our peri_ (1:1000)

- My age (35) (partly b/c this mean insurance would cover part of the cost)

- Possibility of terminating depending on diagnosis

- Knowledge of my personality - need to have all available information

- My ability to stand up to other indicated interventions (quad results opened up a possible cascade)

It is a very personal decision, one that has very real consequences, so as much as it may help to hear what went into other people's decisions I would encourage you to think long and hard about what the process will be like for YOU.
post #11 of 19
I'm 29 but I don't think I'd ever get an amnio, and I know I wouldn't if age was the only risk factor. I can't say for sure that if other tests were showing a strong possibility of something being wrong that I wouldn't want it, but I'd have to be in that situation and be learning much more about the specifics to make that call. Again, the key point would be what would we do with that info? Would there be something we could do to help the baby, like having a special team at the birth or surgery in utero (which are just things I've heard of and don't really know about)? There's a good chance we'll be having #4 when I'm 36 and I know just based on age I won't get the amnio. I wouldn't abort and I wouldn't want to risk causing it to.
post #12 of 19
I was 32 with DD1 and 37 with DD2. I tested positive on the quad screen (I think it was a triple screen then) for DD1: 1 in 39 chance of Downs. My then-OB tried to strong-arm me into an amnio without a L2 ultrasound. We talked to family and decided that we wouldn't abort no matter what, so the amnio became less of an issue. We weren't willing to accept the chance of m/c, however small. We were satisfied with genetic counseling and the L2 u/s that we got through the midwife we switched to.

With DD2, no quad screen or amnio, but did get several u/s due to age and thyroid.
post #13 of 19
I was 23 during most of my last pregnancy and I did not get an amnio, but I had a negative quad screen and 2 normal ultrasounds.

I'm 26 during this pregnancy and I would only consider an amnio if there was something really troubling on the quad screen (results aren't back yet) or ultrasound.

If I were 35 I would get an amnio if I had a positive quad screen and something very definitely "off" on an ultrasound. I wouldn't do it for age alone.

In any scenario I would probably only do an amnio if there was a good indication that there was a condition which I would consider terminating the pregnancy over (i.e. not "just" Down Syndrome).
post #14 of 19
I am 32 and expecting my 2nd LO. We had some abnormalities noted on our 20 week u/s that could have been indicators for Downs. We were offerred an amnio and quad screen. We did the the quad screen (the result was very low-risk for Downs) and decided against the amnio. DH and I would not have terminated this pregnancy, no matter what the result of the amnio. It was irrelevent to us. We also didn't want to risk having a m/c.
post #15 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Everyone, for your feedback. It is very helpful.

Thx, RedOakMomma. The numeric odds are what I wanted to learn more about and that is helpful, b/c i'm a big numbers person and feel more at ease knowing exactly what my odds might be.

Bokonon, that is interesting about the preclampsia.

I think we'll wait to have our u/s at 19 weeks and if there are any soft markers at that point, then i'll opt for the amnio. But it sounds like all other negatives are very good indicators for peace of mind.

thx, again for all the help. hoping for a healthy baby!
post #16 of 19
I just had an amnio done about a week and a half ago. We are still anxiously waiting for results. I am 36, will be 37 when the baby is born. I would not have done it for age alone. We did first trimester screening and nuchal translucency, which were negative. The 2nd trimester quad screen came back positive with a 1:15 chance of Down syndrome. That is what made us decide to do it. If the quad screen was negative we would not have done an amnio. We will not terminate, but if the baby is affected we want to know ahead of time and be prepared at the time of birth. They did a level II ultrasound right before the amnio and it was completely normal - no markers for Down's were seen. I really feel in my heart now that the baby is okay. I was scared to death of the procedure. My worst nightmare would have been losing the pregnancy because of the procedure, then receiving "normal baby" results. It was very uncomfortable, and I don't want to ever do it again, but so far, 11 days out, I feel like we're "safe." I was mildly crampy the day of the procedure, rested that day and the 2 days afterwards, then was back to normal activity. We were quoted a 1 in 300 to 1 in 500 rate of pregnancy loss.

(By the way - I'm a surrogate mother, so these decisions were made with myself and the intended mother. When I say "we", that's who I'm referring to.)

Good luck to you in your decision making. I know it's a tough one.

Originally Posted by pedal_princess View Post

I'm 35 and my hubby and I are torn about an amnio. I had the quad blood and u/s testing and they came back negative. I'd love to hear from anyone who made the choice to have or not have an amnio. and please state your age as that is the main reason we are considering.

Thanks in advance for your help.
post #17 of 19
I was 39 when I got pregnant, now 40 and expecting very soon. We did the nuchal translucency, and there was about 1:1000 chance of anything wrong, so we decided to wait until the 20 week ultrasound to see if there were any markers. There weren't so we opted out of the amnio. The doctor who did the ultrasound said to look at the numbers - - if the odds of a chance of a problem is lower than the odds of amnio terminating the pregnancy, than don't do it!

I was also affected by knowing that my cousin's wife lost a (healthy, normal) baby from an amnio. She, however, did go on to do another amnio after that loss, but I couldn't stand the thought!

post #18 of 19
I am 37 and will not get any testing.
post #19 of 19
We chose an amnio at age 35 because we knew the results it could provide would determine whether or not we would continue the pregnancy.
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