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MaterniT21 or other NIPT - Who's getting it?

post #1 of 96
Thread Starter 

I'm signed up for MaterniT21 on Feb 3rd.  I'm 40 and this is my 1st. 

 

It seems many people here are skeptical or opposed to certain testing and/or medical interventions.  I am not one of them! 

post #2 of 96

I am right there with you. I am 35 this time.   I am doing the test at 10 weeks.  Just curious have you heard any reason why its better to wait.  I actually called the company and asked and they said no.  For some reason my doctors office wanted to it at 12 weeks and do the nucual scan at the same time but I wanted to do it as soon as  possible.  I am very excited for this new option for testing.  This wasn't available when I had my first or second.  We had a scare with my first with a false positive and I love how accurate this new test is.  Still haven't found out what the cost is but we are doing it regardless.  There is one place here in Qatar that offers it. The test though is actually ran through a lab in California. 

post #3 of 96
Thread Starter 

Hi Cagirl -

My doc's office said they always schedule them for 12 weeks bc when you go for the appt and talk to a genetic counselor, they may find that your insurance doesn't cover NIPT.  If that's the case and you're 12 weeks, they can go right ahead and do the NT scan and associated blood work.

 

I have United Healthcare and I know they cover it for women over 35 (considered high risk for defects).  I read some posts on other websites and the cost, if paid out of pocket, looks to be in the mid-$200 range.

 

My test will be at 11 weeks.  I've read that some of the other kinds (like Harmony I think) have had issues where there wasn't enough sample in the blood at 10 weeks and the ladies had to go in for a redraw of their blood.  It's uncommon, but it does happen. 

I could've done it sooner, but I didn't get around to rescheduling it until today (I'm in my 10th week now)... total laziness to blame!

post #4 of 96
We have Cigna international. No clue what they will cover. The other company we have is a saudia Arabian company and I know they don't cover it. I don't mind though we will pay it regardless of cost. I think I will do 11 weeks to. I want to do it and get my results before the NT scan since it's more accurate. I don't want to deal with any false positives or reasons to worry. Wondering if I even need to do the NT scan if I do the blood test.
post #5 of 96

My sister in law had this test after some soft markers showed up on the ultrasound.  She was very happy with it, but I think she told me they went on to do further DNA testing.  My situation is that we have no insurance (thanks to Obamacare insurance would cost us more than our house payment) and are on a budget.  Typically, I have gotten ultrasounds with my previous pregnancy but after reading and researching, I am thinking of not doing the 20 week one.  I have a midwife, so I don't even see her until 12 weeks.  I am 41 and I do care about genetic issues, though I would not terminate a pregnancy.   I am dying and I do mean dying to know the sex of the baby.  So it is really appealing to me to do the MaterniT21 test that also tells you the sex and thinking of skipping the ultrasound, NT and Quad (which normally we skip everything but the ultrasound) I need to talk to my midwife about it, but I think I might be able to argue with my  husband, who is an extreme penny pincher, that the costs of the ultrasound or the MaterniT21 are similar, maybe even less with the blood test.  I know they give discounts to self-pay, but I am not sure exactly what that entails.  I also want to talk to my sister-in-law about their choices.  She has an OB, so they are ultrasounding the heck out of her.  I do have to admit, just for the reassurance of a heart beat I would love an early ultrasound, so I am grateful I have a midwife and don't really have that option. 

post #6 of 96
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cagirlintexas View Post

We have Cigna international. No clue what they will cover. The other company we have is a saudia Arabian company and I know they don't cover it. I don't mind though we will pay it regardless of cost. I think I will do 11 weeks to. I want to do it and get my results before the NT scan since it's more accurate. I don't want to deal with any false positives or reasons to worry. Wondering if I even need to do the NT scan if I do the blood test.

cagirl - I am not planning on an NT scan - the MaterniT21 is the most sensitive/specific screening test so it's one step better than the NT and blood combo.  For people who start with the NT scan, if something abnormal is found then the Mat21 is encouraged (or amnio).  I'm just skipping ahead to the best test available. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by daisygrrrl View Post
 

My sister in law had this test after some soft markers showed up on the ultrasound.  She was very happy with it, but I think she told me they went on to do further DNA testing.  My situation is that we have no insurance (thanks to Obamacare insurance would cost us more than our house payment) and are on a budget.  Typically, I have gotten ultrasounds with my previous pregnancy but after reading and researching, I am thinking of not doing the 20 week one.  I have a midwife, so I don't even see her until 12 weeks.  I am 41 and I do care about genetic issues, though I would not terminate a pregnancy.   I am dying and I do mean dying to know the sex of the baby.  So it is really appealing to me to do the MaterniT21 test that also tells you the sex and thinking of skipping the ultrasound, NT and Quad (which normally we skip everything but the ultrasound) I need to talk to my midwife about it, but I think I might be able to argue with my  husband, who is an extreme penny pincher, that the costs of the ultrasound or the MaterniT21 are similar, maybe even less with the blood test.  I know they give discounts to self-pay, but I am not sure exactly what that entails.  I also want to talk to my sister-in-law about their choices.  She has an OB, so they are ultrasounding the heck out of her.  I do have to admit, just for the reassurance of a heart beat I would love an early ultrasound, so I am grateful I have a midwife and don't really have that option. 

daisy -  At the place where I go, when I get the MaterniT21 test they also do an ultrasound with that.  I would assume it's part of the dating (confirmation) process.  If you do it that way, you can get a 2 for 1! 
Also, I believe the Mat21 gives you all the same info you would get in the NT and Quad except for neural tube defects status. 

So I'm not an Obama fan at all...  I try to avoid paying attention to him honestly as he wrecks things.  Obamacare has caused your private insurance rate to skyrocket?  Talk about being stuck between a rock and a hard place.  I'm sorry that has happened to you!

The only thing I could think of in trying to find low cost options for ultrasounds, etc. would be to call your local Planned Parenthood or maybe the Health Department and see if there are any programs they know of to assist. 

As for the Mat21, this was on Sequenom's website (the co that does Mat21) re payment assistance:

http://www.advancedforwomen.com/pdf/maternit21-prenatal-test-cost-information.pdf

post #7 of 96

Thanks for the info innacircle.  I emailed MaterniT21 and they do have a financial assistance program.  I was just hoping more for a cash pay discount.  My husband is self-employed and makes a good living, but it is unpredictable when the work comes in, so there is always financial stress.  We live in a very rural community.  The hospital here doesn't even do maternity.  Or I should say they do until so many weeks and then transfer to a hospital 1 hour away.  My options for things are few, but my midwife is a decent friend of mine, and I know she deals with a lot of medicaid stuff, though medicaid gives her so much greif and rarely pays her.  She can do the quad for $50 cash.  But I hate the whole percentage thing.  I would rather know with 99% accuracy, heck would even take 97% rather than 1 in 200.  I will be 7 weeks tomorrow, so I have time to research. 

post #8 of 96

My main reason with avoiding the other tests is the high rate of false positive.  I don't want to get stuck in limbo waiting for more test results wondering if the baby is okay.  We had that with my first and it was HELL!!!  I was so upset for 2 weeks before we could get another appointment and figure out what is going on.  I am not a fan of the new changes in heath care.  We are lucky in that my husbands work is eating alot of the additional costs but there will be significantly less raises this year because of that. 

post #9 of 96
How is MaterniT21 different from the quad screen?

What is the range of dates when you can do the NT?
post #10 of 96
Thread Starter 

AD -

MaterniT21 is in a category called NIPT (non-invasive prenatal testing).  Specifically this type of test is "cell-free DNA testing" and can be done any time after 10 weeks.  It identifies the following:  "fetal chromosomal abnormalities; from common (trisomies 21 (Down Syn), 18 and 13) - to rare (sex aneuploidies, trisomies 16 and 22, and select microdeletions)."  It also tells you the sex of the baby if it is a singleton pregnancy.

It works by testing fetal DNA "debris" in the mother's blood so there is nothing invasive done to the fetus.  At my doc's office they do an u/s at the same time, before the blood draw, I'm assuming to confirm dates.

There are other similar tests called Panorama, Harmony and Verifi but they all have slight differences. 

 

 

The quad screen is a blood test (mother's blood) done 2nd trimester, bw 15-22 weeks (bw 16-18 wks is optimal) and it measures the risk for Down syndrome (trisomy 21), trisomy 18 and neural tube defects. 

 

The NT scan is something else altogether and is done bw 11-14 weeks.  An u/s is used to measure the amount of fluid under the skin on the back of the baby's neck (nuchal translucency).  A blood test (mother's) is usually also done as part of a broader screening sometimes referred to as a "first look" test.  This screening gives you a risk assessment for Down Syndrome (trisomy 21) and trisomy 18.

post #11 of 96
We are doing the one called verifi. The difference is the really low rate of false positives compared to older tests. If it comes back your baby has a problem then pretty much they do. It's almost as accurate as amnio.
post #12 of 96
Thread Starter 

Had my MaterniT21 appt today. 

Both the genetic counselor and one of the u/s techs were out so there was a sign at the desk saying to expect delays.  I have lived in rural USA and in cities like LA, DC and STL.  I'll tell you what, one good thing about STL is the way they run their medical offices.  I was thinking I was gonna be waiting forever (like hours), and then the lady warned me that it might even be more than 10 minutes.  10 MINUTES.  That is not a wait in other areas - that would be like being a VIP!  Anyway, I waited 5 minutes and was done in 40.  It is like that at all my doctors' appointments here.  I'm getting spoiled.

They did a full ultrasound - lots of measuring and angles.  Got to see the baby's arms, legs, feet, head, stomach, bladder, heart chambers, profile, umbilical cord (with circulation) and the areas it connects to the baby and the placenta, and I'm pretty sure I saw plenty of butt cheek shots in there too.  Everything was normal and by dates I'm 11 weeks today but am measuring 11w3d.  Heartbeat was 158.

 

They started by telling me they were going to send my blood to Verinata.  In my head I knew that meant the test was Verifi not Mat21 and there had been no mention of their office offering both.  I said "don't you mean Sequenom?"  She said my insurance had a contract with Verifi.  I told her I had been expecting Mat21... and of course, no genetic counselor!  The tech said my insurance covered both so she went ahead and chose the Mat21 since it's the one I knew most about and was comfortable with.  I hate on-the-spot choices so I was glad she went ahead and selected it!  There was a doctor available but I got the impression he was primarily there if things went south in the ultrasound.  I saw the charting the u/s tech did and everything was marked normal so I didn't warrant a visit with the MD, which was OK by me.  And now we wait!

post #13 of 96
So is this Mat21 testing done somewhere outside of the OB/MW's office? How accurate is the gender testing?
post #14 of 96
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ambivalent Dreams View Post

So is this Mat21 testing done somewhere outside of the OB/MW's office? How accurate is the gender testing?

It is 99.4% accurate at detecting the presence (or absence) of the Y chromosome.  Not bad!

For me it was done at a diff office - one right next door to my obgyn.  I think it's considered a maternal/fetal specialist office although it's called "Center for Women's Wellness and Fetal Health."

post #15 of 96
How long until you know your results innacircle? And you are finding out sex right?
post #16 of 96
Thread Starter 

delighted - The turnaround is 8-10 days and we're def finding out the sex.  Oddly though, as with all else in this pg, no fire for it at all.  DH, on the other hand, is like a kid waiting for Santa Claus.  I'm starting to feel better overall, so maybe my ambition will kick in shortly.  All I want to do right now is eat ham/mustard sandwiches :wink and cookies while reading books by the fire. 

post #17 of 96

I think this is a very interesting topic... I hope I don't stir the pot TOO much.  This is my first baby and I am planning on having the genetic testing.  There is nothing in my/ my family background that would suggest any problems and I am only 30, but I do work with special needs children and I am TERRIFIED of having a one of my own.  I love the children I work with but I am not comfortable bringing another child into the world with such difficulties.  The world is too selfish and honestly, I am too selfish.  I think I could not be an adequate mother due to the resentment I know I would feel.  I am so excited to raise a family but I will also be excited when they go off into the world on their own.  Knowing this would never happen is unimaginable.  I may sound insensitive and I'm sure I will anger people when I say, I wish more people could spend time with special needs children and be able to understand the struggles they face before making the choice to add another to this world.  

 

That being said, I have insurance so the choice for me is easy.  If I didn't have insurance, I would be thinking twice.

post #18 of 96
Thread Starter 

Corinne - Hey, no judgment here at all.  You've got to make your own calls in life and I have to say I'm feeling the same as you.  Having insurance won't cover the test though - since you are 30 (not AMA of >35), unless you have a history of genetic abnormalities in the fam or a scan that is inconclusive, it is my understanding that insurance won't pay for it.  I think most NIPT providers have direct pay options that would end up being $500 or less out of pocket though.

 

These are the coverage requirements for my insurance (UHC) and from what I've read most others are similar:

-Maternal age of 35 years or older at delivery

-Fetal ultrasound findings indicating an increased risk of aneuploidy

-History of a prior pregnancy with a trisomy

-Positive first or second trimester screening test results for aneuploidy

-Parental balanced Robertsonian translocation with an increased risk of fetal trisomy 13 or trisomy 21

post #19 of 96

Oh thanks for the heads up, I will double check that.  I checked into it with my first pregnancy (miscarried) and I think it was covered with a doctor's referral.  But I think it is worth it and I would never forgive myself if I didn't and there was something amiss when the babe was born.  Good luck to you! It sounds like you've done a lot of research!

post #20 of 96
Okay, so i'd like to do mat21 but not so much that I'd spend $500. I'm 31. What about NIPT?

I was actually just planning on doing the quad screen until this thread... I didn't know there were other choices.
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