Prenatal tests encompass a range of screening and diagnostic tests that help doctors monitor a pregnant woman's health, and identify problems in either the woman or unborn child.
The goal of prenatal testing is to identify health problems early and treat them if possible. It also provides information about the pregnancy that may help parents prepare for the future including the child's size, sex, gestational age, as well as genetic abnormalities.
The difference between a screening and diagnostic test is as follows:
A screening test is a non-invasive, safe way to evaluate the risk or possibility that there is an abnormality with a pregnancy or child. A screening test, however, does not definitively (without question) diagnose an abnormality.
For definite diagnosis of a problem or abnormality in a pregnancy, a more invasive diagnostic test is needed. Diagnostic testing involves obtaining a blood, fluid and/or tissue sample so it can be tested for abnormalities.
Staffed by OB/GYNs with advanced training in prenatal diagnostics and equipped with the latest technology, Virtua's Maternal-Fetal Medicine Centers offer a variety of tests and services to evaluate and monitor a baby's health and development during pregnancy including:
- 3-D and 4-D ultrasound for fetal monitoring and diagnosis
Amniocentesis (diagnostic test for genetic disorders)
- Biophysical profiling (screening for fetal well-being)
Chorionic villus sampling (CVS) (diagnostic test for genetic disorders)
- Fetal blood sampling
- Duplex Doppler
Non-stress testing (fetal heart monitoring)
On-site echocardiography (fetal heart study for detecting problems)
- State-of-the-art Down syndrome testing including first trimester screening and sequential screening. See video...
- Continuous consultation throughout pregnancy
Virtua is South Jersey's leading provider of OB/GYN care, and a great resource for prenatal testing and diagnosis. Before scheduling a prenatal testing appointment, patients must first get a referral from their obstetrician. Call 1-888-VIRTUA-3 (1-888-847-8823) for more information.
Have an appointment at a Virtua Maternal-Fetal Medicine Center?
Be sure to fill out the online pre-registration form before you go.