A simple blood test for Down Syndrome is now available for women who are 10 weeks pregnant. It's more accurate than amniocentesis, and safer for the mother and child.
A recent article asks: Do All Women Need Genetic Testing Before Pregnancy?
More than half of pregnant women do some kind of prenatal screening or testing of their fetus ... The vast majority of women undergo [disease] carrier screening based on their ethnic background, although many, regardless of their heritage, are also screened for cystic fibrosis. Traditionally, certain ethnic groups — especially Ashkenazic Jews of Eastern European descent — have been advised to consider carrier screening for various fatal conditions including Tay-Sachs and Canavan diseases.
[GenPath recently announced a test to detect] 160 diseases in a single genetic screening test. Indeed, GenPath is presenting the new test as a way to level the genetic playing field and expand testing to any woman, anywhere.
This is just the latest of a battery of new blood tests that can determine everything from fetal sex to Down syndrome to paternity.