Sooo... never bothered with the quad screen before. This time, I just went without much thought other than remembering the insanely high rate of false positives, that it is just a screening (odds) deal and not diagnostic in any way, and if it comes back with not so great news- I am going into it in the first place with that being probable, JUST because of my age (41).
Did get that call from my MW yesterday - "positive for Down Syndrome."
I did do research before on the quad screen. I did more since yesterday morning. And I think this "test" is a joke.
What IS the point of continuing this practice? Is it because it funnels MILLIONS of dollars into more expensive testing moms with healthy babies would not otherwise have, if the quad screen didn't scare the crap outta them that is? Like amnio, higher level u/s, etc... Because the next step after a funky quad result is always... "further testing"....
I am not sure yet what my "odds" were calculated out to be. But I have learned that many women my age, who have an average 1 in 85 chance of having a child with DS ... when taking the quad screen end up with a "positive for DS" result because the cut-off for Down is 1 in 385 with the quad screening.
So, if say, my "positive" for DS is 1 in 150 chance with the quad, I'll take THOSE odds over my general textbook, going only by age, odds of 1 in 85!
From a prenatal testing, medical website:
"The screen positive rate varies for the different tests and for women of different ages. However, for all tests and all age groups, the majority of women who screen positive have an unaffected pregnancy."
The "majority" of women have unaffected pregnancies. But test positive for a problem. From what else I have learned, the tests do end up catching most of the true problems, because they cast their "positive for X problem" net soooo wideeee - it is hard for them to miss - therefore they can claim super high rates of "accurate detection of problems." Which is great for the 1 out of 1,000 families with a true issue - but just forget about the other 350 families who were also "detected" (inaccurately) yet have perfectly healthy babies. (Phhhssh.)
It is just crazy - this "test." !
Ok. Rant over.
I just wish my youngest child was not home when I got the call. Trying to explain the overheard, "your test was positive for Down Syndrome" to a 12 year old has been almost impossible! Explaining "screening" vs. "diagnostic" testing, etc etc etc... ACK! Honestly - THIS has been the hardest part of ever having made the mistake of going for the quad bloodwork!
Level II ultrasound in 12 days ... can't wait! :) Wish I had just stuck with what I have always done. No unusual testing, just the anatomy scan around 20 weeks.
New Baby 12/9/13