The quadruple test for Down syndrome screening in pregnant women of advanced maternal age
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The purpose of the current study was to determine whether or not the quadruple test for screening Down syndrome is an effective method to replace direct amniocentesis in pregnant women ≥35 years of age.
This study analyzed the screening performance of the quadruple test according to maternal age at delivery among subjects who had a quadruple screening test at 1 of 4 hospitals during a 5-year period and for whom data on fetal chromosomal abnormalities were available.
The study population of 9,435 pregnant women was divided into 3 groups according to maternal age: 6,922 women were <35 years of age; 2,284 were 35–39 years of age; and 229 women ≥40 years of age. The detection and false-positive rates of the quadruple screening test for Down or Edward syndrome in the 3 groups of women were 80 and 6.6%, 200 and 15.8%, and 100 and 35.3%, respectively.
Under conditions in which first trimester screening test is not available, the quadruple screening test is a better choice than direct amniocentesis for pregnancies complicated by advanced maternal age. When providing genetic counseling, we need to explain the accurate detection and false-positive rates of the screening test according to maternal age.
KeywordsAdvanced maternal age Down syndrome Quadruple screening Amniocentesis
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