The integrated test is a screening test done during pregnancy to find out the chance that a baby has certain birth defects, such as Down
syndrome. The test is done in two stages at
two different times during the pregnancy. You will get the results after the
tests in the second trimester are done.
The first stage can be done around 10 to 13
weeks of pregnancy. The tests done for this stage are:
An ultrasound. The ultrasound can show the
age of the baby and measure the thickness of the skin at the back of the baby's
neck (nuchal translucency, or NT).
Blood tests done to measure the level of two substances in
the blood called pregnancy-associated plasma protein A (PAPP-A) and beta-human
chorionic gonadotropin hormone (beta-hCG).
The second stage can usually be done between
weeks 15 and 20. The tests done for this stage are all blood tests and include:
Beta-human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG).
Unconjugated estriol (a form of estrogen).
The results of all these tests are reviewed to see if
levels are higher or lower than expected, and the results are reported after
the second stage.
Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine & Siobhan M. Dolan, MD, MPH - Reproductive Genetics
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