Nuchal Translucency Scan (NT)
Nuchal Translucency is a sonography done to see the appearance of collection of fluid under the skin behind the fetal neck during the first trimester of the pregnancy. The NT scan can detect about 80% of fetuses with trisomy 21 and other major aneuploid. Dr. Pawar is accredited by the Fetal Medicine Foundation, UK for the NT scan (11-13 week scan).
How is a nuchal translucency scan performed and when?
The nuchal translucency scan is done between 11 and 14 weeks of pregnancy. It might need to be done alone, or it might be able to be done while you’re having your dating scan.
Usually the scan is done through your abdomen but occasionally the nuchal translucency can only be seen by inserting a probe into the vagina.
You might also be offered a blood test around this time. Your doctor can look at the results of the combined test (blood test and nuchal translucency scan) to get a more accurate picture of the risk of a chromosomal abnormality.
What happens if my baby is in the high risk category?
The results of the nuchal translucency scan will not be used alone to calculate the risk of a chromosomal abnormality. All your first trimester screening is combined to calculate your risk. The calculation based on the mother’s age, the nuchal translucency measurement of your baby, the gestational age of the baby, blood tests and the baby’s nasal bone.
If you have a risk of 1 in 300 or greater (e.g. 1 in 150) you are considered to be in the “increased risk” category.
Even if you are classified as high risk, remember your baby probably doesn’t have a chromosomal abnormality. You may be referred to a genetic counsellor. They will discuss your options and help you to decide if you would like to have a more invasive diagnostic test, such as chorionic villus sampling (CVS) or amniocentesis. These diagnostic tests can tell you definitively if your baby has a chromosomal abnormality or not. Tests such as CVS and amniocentesis carry a small risk of miscarriage.
Do I have to have the test?
No, it is your decision.
You might choose to have a nuchal translucency scan or you may choose to go straight to one of the more invasive diagnostic tests instead to get a definitive answer. You can have chorionic villus sampling from 11 weeks of pregnancy, or you can have an amniocentesis from 15 weeks of pregnancy.
Or you might decide not to have the nuchal translucency scan, or any other tests.
About Dr. Rajeshwari Pawar
Dr. Rajeshwari Pawar comes with over 23 years of experience working with the most reputable national and international institutes. She is a renowned clinician who ensures a memorable pregnancy and delivery experience for her patients and their families.