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Old 09-10-2010, 05:38 AM   #1
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Would someone please tell me about a quad screen

This is my 4th baby and I have chosen to not do any of the testing other than a 20 week ultrasound and GD test with my other three. I just found out yesterday that my 3 year old has a mild case of spina bifida (that is how the nurse on the phone described it- i will find out more next week when we go in to talk to the dr). I am very scared and would not have ever had more pregnancies knowing that I could possibly doom the child with something that might cause problems for life. I will not terminate this pregnancy because I believe that this child is supposed to be here but I wouldnt have tried to get pregnant again if I had known earlier. The nurse said having one child with spina bifida increases my chances of having another with it. My concern is if this child would have it worse than my 3 year old. I had already turned down the early blood test and ultrasound because I didnt think there would be anything to worry about. When I called today to see if I could have them done I was told I was too late and they could do a quad screen between 16-18 weeks. Are these tests accurate? Obviously if I am just finding out about the 3 year old having it after being told a couple years ago that he was fine and there was nothing wrong with his back then it is mild enough that it wasnt caught on ultrasound. If this baby were to have a worse case would they be able to see it on ultrasound? I would like to know so that this baby could have the best possible care as early as possible if there are any problems.


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Old 09-10-2010, 05:54 AM   #2
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Re: Would someone please tell me about a quad screen

In my understanding, a quad screen has a HIGH false positive rate. If you get a positive they follow up with an U/S to "double check". Even then I do not believe there is anything they can do about it other than schedule a c-section to prevent further complications with the spina bifida.
I too declined the early U/S and screening. With my first, the OB said it was done to help with the shock prepare the parents for a special needs child. I don't need to be prepared or worried as I see it. With my second, the midwife said that the 20 week U/S would "catch" it if there was a problem and we would go from there.
All this said, I wish you luck with whatever decision you make and with caring for your son. Good luck mama!
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Old 09-10-2010, 07:21 AM   #3
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Re: Would someone please tell me about a quad screen

I also avoided the quad screen with both my pregnancies after seeing everything my sister went through (tests, special ultrasounds) for my nephew who was to be severe DS. He ended up being perfectly fine (now 8yo). I did however make sure to get the 20week ultrasound and ended up even having to get another one because of the way DS2 was turned they couldn't get a good look at the base of the spine. I personally am more confident in an ultrasound than the quad screen, but then for people like my sister, they both failed. I think the quad screen does have it's place for some; maybe making the US technician more aware of certain things to thoroughly screen for.

It really is up to you. LIke you said, you want to make sure to provide this baby with the best possible care available. I think if it would ease your mind to have the quad screen, do it. I hope whatever you choose that everything turns out okay.
SAHM , happily married to DH since 4/05; Mommy to our little Doodles 2/08, my VBAC babies 3/10 and 4/12.
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Old 09-10-2010, 07:30 AM   #4
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Re: Would someone please tell me about a quad screen

Yes I think your chances are higher of having another child with that condition, but still not super high. I don't know the figures, though. I wouldn't do the quad screen for the reasons that have been said already- too many false positives and whatever they find wouldn't change how I would treat the baby or feel about it. I am not really a worrier- I like to take each day as it comes.
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Old 09-10-2010, 07:06 PM   #5
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Re: Would someone please tell me about a quad screen

IMO, if your going to keep the baby anyways - I wouldnt do the quad screen. With kate we were told that she had a 70% chance of having down syndrome..we had had the quad screen and then another u/s and another blood test...which all pointed towards the posssibilty of down syndrome. She is perfectly fine.
Jen -momma to MaryKate 12/13/07, Kara 7/22/09, Adalane "Laney" 2/9/11, ^angel^ 10/13, & Jacob 8/21/14

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Old 09-10-2010, 07:59 PM   #6
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Re: Would someone please tell me about a quad screen

I wouldn't do the quad screening either for the same reasons everyone else has already said. I don't want to worry myself silly over a result that has a high chance of being false. Good luck, mama.
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