Is it a boy or a girl?

Dr. Piegari photoWhen seeing patients in the office for their first prenatal visit, by far the most common question I get asked is “when can I find out what I am having?” With a good ultrasound machine and ultra-sonographer, the sex of the fetus can be determined usually around fourteen weeks with pretty good accuracy.

Did you know that there is an accurate, safe, rapid and noninvasive test that your provider can order as early as nine weeks that can not only tell you the sex of your baby, but can also detect chromosome abnormalities that are routinely tested for later in the pregnancy?

Currently there are four companies that now offer this test. By extracting fetal cell-free DNA form maternal blood, Trisomy 21 (Down’s syndrome), Trisomy 18 and Trisomy 13 can be detected with a very high sensitivity and specificity. Other chromosomal abnormalities and genetic disorders can be tested for as well and it’s growing by the day. Most important to some, the sex of the fetus can also be determined with nearly 100% accuracy.

This test does have its limitations, so I recommend that you talk to your healthcare provider about NIPT (Non Invasive Perinatal Testing) if you are interested.

Michael Piegari, M.D.