To Amnio Or Not To Amnio

28 Replies
Confused - June 17

I was 34 when I got pregnant and last week I turned 35. My doctors office has gone into panic mode. Apparently all the rules change. My doctor offered me an amnio because of my age but I am already 20 1/2 weeks pregnant. If we found something out and decided not to have the baby I would have to have a partial birth abortion which I don't think I could handle, but I don't want to make a child lead a horrible/painful childhood because its mother was to scared to address the issues. Anyone else been in this position? btw I am told the risk of a miscarriage is 1 in 250...not thrilled about those odds either


Patty - June 17

Hello Confused....or should I say, try not to let this confuse you! :) My Dr. said to me just because someone turns 35, does NOT mean your're body just shuts down or automatically creates a child with a birth defect etc. How are you feeling, is your pregnancy going without complications? If so, say, thanks Doc, but no thanks to the Amnio. I am 37 and opted not to have it done. We had just a very slight risk of a baby with Downs. However, the US showed no Major markers to indicate he has this. So we said, no, we are continuing on like we are. I did not like the small risks either with Amnio and we decided to stick with the Level 2 US results instead. So if you are having a good pregnancy and you are told your US's look good, I would forgo the amnio and enjoy this time as much as you can. The law, has to offer you the Amnio because you turned 35, you certainly are not obligated to it! Take care and best wishes! I hope this helps take some of the confusion away. :)


BigDilema - June 17

I know exactly how you feel since I am wrestling with the same dilema. I am 40 though and the odds are higher. If I were you and you have no reason to suspect there might be a problem I wouldn't get it. Anyone in your family have any abnormalities? If not I would go by the Extended AFB test and the level 2 sonogram. I think the only reason why I am thinking about getting one is my one in my family has any chromo defects or abnormalities but the way the doctor described how when the egg separates it may not do so exactly with 23 chromos and may carry an extra one with it...this I am told happens to older eggs. I am just afraid I am falling victim to that HMO mentality and that they want you to test so they don't have to care for a down baby or whatever..I have been loosing sleep over this...I wish I could decide.


Gina - June 17

I just came home from having a CVS, which is more risky and it was nothing. Have it! It did not even hurt! At least you know what youre getting into. I will find out in a week if my baby is ok. I will find out on Monday only a couple of days from now about the 5 biggest scares AND I FIND OUT THE s_x OF MY BABY AT 13 WEEKS!!! HOW AWESOME IS THAT!!


Connie - June 18

This is a difficult decision. I am 38 and after all the blood work and ultra sounds turned out normal, we decided not to have the amino. But we were stressed for weeks debating if we should do it. If any of the tests came back leaning towards problems, we would have done the amino. This is a stressful decision and I understand what you are going through.


no way - June 18

My doctor went over all of the risks with me and he made it clear to me that the amnio test only tells you if you are at a high risk of having defects.. he said it does not specify such defects but opens the door for further testing. To me, the risks that the test its self carries is just not worth it. I won't risk this baby just to find out "if". I mean isn't there already an "if" in all pregnancies? We're ready for whatever the Good Lord means us to have.


Tammy - June 20

Confused- It is a difficult decision. I opted for amnio because I am 45 and have had 2 miscarriages. There is a slight risk with amnio but I had not one problem. I had the results in 9 days and I am really enjoying the rest of my pregnancy. Amnio is 99.9 % accurate. If I had the Level II I think I would still worry some. As for your dilemma, 20 1/2 week is far along. Why didn't they tell you sooner. They chances for genetic problems gets greater after 35, not on the day you turn 35. I had my son at 41 and opted for no testing and he was just fine. Goof luck in your decision.


confused - June 23

Thank you everyone for your input. I really appreciate everyone's opinion. My husband and I opted not to have the amnio. The main reason is... I am so far along that we wouldn't feel like we could terminate the pregnancy if there was something wrong so why chance other issues if we wouldn't change anything. The reason the doctor just offered it to me is the light bulb went off in her head...oh she just turned 35 4 days ago I need to mention this. When I was 34 they didn't stop to think that I would be 35 in a month and they might need to mention it. Basically we decided that we just need to put a little faith in God and pray that the baby is healthy. Thank again everyone.


Lisa - June 23

I am 39 and have a 4 month old baby. After having the blood test and ultrasound i decided not to go through with the amnio as i was told that the chance of having a baby with downs was still very minimal. She is my 5th child, we are still considering one more, but i think i would probably opt to have the amnio as i will be 40-41 when and if i have another.


Marjorie - June 24

I was not thrilled with those odds either. I am 37 years old and having my first child. I went for an amnio at 16 weeks and the dr. tried twice (not to scare you, but it was painful) and the needle would not penetrate the sac. I took it as a sign. I decided not to do the amnio. I will have a "level II" sonogram at 20 weeks which is a very detailed sonogram and measures for certain "markers" that may indicate birth defects. It is not as accurate (80%) as an amnio, but I am fine with that. 1 in 250 was not a risk I was willing to take. Don't let anyone talk you into it if you do not feel comfortable doing it. This is a private matter that you should discuss with your husband or significant other. Keep others out of it so that you can make your "own" decision. Good luck. [email protected]


maryellen - July 8

we women have seen our babys on sonograms and we are so happy to see our little babies growing inside of us. BUT suddenly the cute little baby turns into a 'FETUS" which by the way means "little one" , when we find "something wrong with it" AND suddenly feel justified to have it destroyed because its not perfect. My doctor said since i was almost 40 i could have one and i told him that i will refuse to do so because this baby is a human being and MY little baby no matter if it has 3 heads and 50 fingers. i hope i do have a healthy baby but just the same how can women be so selfish to end someones life because of their wants and diswants and down syndrome babys dont suffer life you think. PRAY nothing happens to your healthy body or someone some day will decide you should be dead


To liz & maryellen - July 11

Hellloooooo, last I heard it was a free country and thankfully women can make their own decision about their own bodies. Just because you are a pro-lifer doesn't mean that you should try and force feed your opinions down everyones thoat. Pro-choicer wrestle with the idea of abortion and don't take it lightly. There are many factors involved. To each their own!!


confused - July 14

too maryellen and question was about the amnio. You have no clue what I have had to do to fight to keep this baby. My husband didn't want it because timing was bad. We fought for three months and I refused an abortion. This hasn't been the happiest pregnancy because I can't share my joys or concerns with my husband. This site has been a lifesaver so unless you have a view about the question above you can keep your holier than thou att_tude and shove it. You might have a suppporting husband but I don't.


to liz and maryellen - July 21

Your comments are rude and inappropriate. Additionally, the problems/defects that can occur with a child are much more serious than missing fingers . . . helooooo is right, you should read a bit more on the types of deformities (including the fact that some of these babies might not live more than a day after they are born) that can occur. Thankfully, these are quite rare. We, confused included, do not need other people telling us what to do with our bodies, we have fought long and hard to have that right. It is not your place to judge anyone here.


lynnstress - July 22

I'm 38 and pg with our first. Monday July 25 I have my level 2 u/s - 20 weeks - and if they detect anything "wrong" I will have to decide whether or not to have an amnio. I agree with you, Confused, I was told the same odds and I don't much like it either. I talked with hubby last night, and although he is very supportive, he said it's my decision. He will be there with me at that appointment. We had discussed some of these things before and quite honestly, I don't know how I would feel if there was something "wrong" with my baby. I don't know if I could handle it. And almost every time I think about it, I start to get teary or cry.


kris - July 22

I am also stressed and tired about hearing about percentages. I dont want to know odds, I want FACTS that can be given me without risking my child. A lady was on here who lost her healthy son at 16 weeks after having an amnio. I wish the docs were a little less forthcoming with their guesses about what COULD be wrong with our babies ... we COULD also get in a car crash on the way home, but they dont point that out. I went for an ultrasound, but they scheduled it a little too early and they couldn't get a good enough look at the head and the heart at 18 weeks and baby was turned wrong. So I go back in three weeks, and if they see something, we'll deal with it - and until then, sometimes I wish the docs would just take measurements, say you are growing well and heart sounds great, see you next month.


L - July 22

Confused Im sorry you have had so much to deal with with your pregnancy and your husband. It must have been a hard decision about the amnio and I admire you for making a decision as it is not easy. If you want this baby and nothing would change, you are right not to have the amnio-your reasoning is very sensible. I find the idea of a partial birth abortion horrendous. I think the doctors tell us about the amnio after 35 as they have to it does not mean when you hit 35 suddenly your risks go shooting up overnight! My mother was 35 when she had me and I was fine. I know a few women who have had babies past 35 and no problems whatsoever.



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