Welcome to the Duncannon OB-GYN Specialty Group. This information sheet will guide you through the steps of amniocentesis . This will also give you definitions of terms you may not understand.
At approximately 15 weeks pregnant, your doctor may have offered you. Amniocentesis is a test that checks for or rules out inherited diseases in a fetus ( the unborn young from the end of the 8th week after conception to the moment of birth). It may also assess the lung maturity to see if a fetus will survive an early delivery. If you wish, you may also find out the sex of your unborn baby.
This procedure is done in an examination room, usually with local anesthesia. It usually takes just a few moments and you must lie still. An ultrasound ( ultrasonic sound- the use of electronic waves for diagnostic or therapeutic purposes, specifically to image an internal body structure, monitoring a developing fetus, or to generate localized deep heat to the tissues) is used to locate the fetus and guide your doctor through the procedure. Your abdomen will be cleaned with an antiseptic solution to prevent infection. A long, thin, hollow needle is inserted into the abdominal and uteran wall( the wall of the uterus ( the womb) where the fetus grows) and approximately 1tbsp to 2tbsp of amniotic fluid is removed through the needle. Amniotic fluid contains cells that have been shed by the developing fetus. They can be examined for defects that are hereditary. During the procedure, you may experience some discomfort so you will be advised to rest for 24 hours. You may experience some cramping for a few hours and spotting ( ie. Drops of blood from your cervix ). The amniotic fluid contains cells and the test that are performed are Cytology Analysis ( the examination of individual cells and small clusters of cells).
You should seek urgent medical attention if you :