We have been offering the non-invasive prenatal test (NIPT) for trisomies 13,18 and 21 (Down syndrome) in our practice for many years. Since 1.7.2022, the costs are covered by the statutory health insurance if there is an indication and after careful consultation with the attending physician. NIPT is still not a routine examination during pregnancy. It is generally only performed if, for example, there is a early detailed ultrasound there is a suspicion of malformations or if a woman, together with her doctor, comes to the conclusion that the test is necessary in her personal situation.
Cash benefits yes or no - the Discussion and decision-making has dragged on for several years. An understandable process, because the prenatal test is reliable, but does not provide a definite diagnosis. An inconspicuous result does not guarantee a healthy child, and an abnormal result must be checked by an invasive procedure (amniocentesis or extraction of placental tissue). A risk of miscarriage is not excluded. One thing is clear: an abnormal result is extremely stressful for the parents and in most cases confronts them with the difficult decision of accepting the child or terminating the pregnancy.
Expectant parents, we advise to be well informed and to consider the possibilities and limitations of prenatal diagnostics. The prenatal DNA test is used solely to exclude or detect the three most common trisomies, but cannot detect malformations, which are much more common. To all those who decide to have a NIPT performed, we therefore recommend combining it with a more extensive ultrasound as part of the First trimester screening.
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The non-invasive prenatal test (NIPT)