WOMENS OPINIONS ON THE OFFER AND USE OF MATERNAL SERUM SCREENING

EEC ROELOFSEN*, LI KAMERBEEK, TJ TYMSTRA, [No Value] BEEKHUIS, A MANTINGH

*Corresponding author for this work

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    Abstract

    We studied the opinions and experiences concerning maternal serum screening of two groups of women: (A) women who were not eligible for prenatal diagnosis; and (B) women for whom prenatal diagnosis was available because of advanced maternal age, and who either underwent chorionic villus sampling or amniocentesis. Many of the women were in favour of the availability of serum screening and would apply for this test in a future pregnancy. This applied also to many respondents who had previously undergone prenatal diagnosis. Most of these women, however, did not intend to decline diagnostic amniocentesis if the screening results did not indicate an increased risk. The majority of the group of respondents of 36 years and over did not consider it acceptable if age indication was dropped altogether.

    A system based on serum screening will have other implications than a policy based on age indication, since specific individual risk assessment is perceived as being of more significance than a risk statistically derived from age alone. Serum screening is often seen as a means of reassurance and many women are not aware of the possible drawbacks. As technology becomes increasingly complicated, counselling has to be adjusted correspondingly. Further research is needed to establish whether and how distress can be minimized and well-considered individual choice can be achieved.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)741-747
    Number of pages7
    JournalPrenatal Diagnosis
    Volume13
    Issue number8
    Publication statusPublished - Aug-1993

    Keywords

    • PRENATAL DIAGNOSIS
    • MATERNAL SERUM SCREENING
    • RISK ASSESSMENT
    • PSYCHOSOCIAL
    • CONSEQUENCES
    • DECISION MAKING
    • DOWNS-SYNDROME

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