Caution over blood tests for trisomy

Counselling will be crucial to reduce the risk of women acting precipitously and terminating healthy pregnancies, according to Associate Professor Stephen Robson, a vice-president of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG).

The tests, which can detect major trisomies through analysis of cell-free fetal DNA in a 10ml sample of a pregnant woman’s blood, have been available from hospitals but are now set for wider use, with the nation’s biggest pathology laboratories offering them.