Common To Do Amnio At Seven Months?

Why would a doctor would perform an amniocentesis at seven months pregnant? Aren't amnios are done at 15 to 20 weeks?

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Peg Plumbo CNM

Peg Plumbo has been a certified nurse-midwife (CNM) since 1976. She has assisted at over 1,000 births and currently teaches in the... Read more

I sincerely hope that you are not the one undergoing this procedure because I would hope that the physician would inform you of the exact indication for an amnio.

Now that I have that off my chest...! Amniocentesis is done whenever there is a strong need to assess the fetal environment or the fetal gestation. As you may know, early amnio (9 to 18 weeks) is usually done to detect genetic disease or the presence or absence of fetal disorders.

Later in pregnancy, it may be done to assess the health of the fetus by sampling the fluid for meconium (baby's first stool, which is not released in utero unless some insult has occured) or bilirubin (a byproduct of red blood cell breakdown, important in diagnosing such things as Rh disease or ABO incompatibility). Generally, other tests are done first and amnio is done last, only if necessary. In cases of preterm labor, sampling the fluid can give a very precise estimate of gestational age and lung maturity. This may help determine if a baby would be better outside or inside the uterus.

An amnio-like procedure is also the route by which certain fetal blood transfusions may be performed as in the case of Rh sensitization or to release pressure in the uterus caused by too much fluid (hydramnios).

An ultrasound is always done prior to, and often during, the procedure to ensure that the needle does not go through the placenta or into the baby.

Hope this helps.

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