We offer the following Women’s health services.
- Cervical Smears
- Antenatal Care
- Emergency Contraception
- Long Acting Reversible Contraception
- Fertility consults
- Pre conceptual advice
- STI screening and treatment
- Maternity and Infant Scheme
- Harmony Prenatal Testing for genetic disorders in pregnancy
- Ultrasound scans
We also offer a comprehensive full Women’s Health and Contraception Services eg mirena/jaydess coils, implanon (“bar in the arm”) etc. Please make an appointment to discuss the various options available with our Nurse or one of the Doctors
Non diagnostic ultrasound scans to look at baby’s position, heart beat and other features provided on most antenatal visits are proving very popular with patients. We offer Antenatal care under the Maternity and Infant Scheme which provides for free antenatal care for all women in pregnancy regardless of medical card or private patient status.
Non-Invasive Pre-Natal Testing (NIPT) – Ariosa Harmony Test
We are delighted to be able to offer highly specialised prenatal testing to our pregnant patients.
Non-invasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT) analyses cell-free DNA circulating in the pregnant mother’s blood.
It is a new option in prenatal screening for Down syndrome (trisomy 21) and other common chromosomal conditions (trisomies 18 and 13), X and Y chromosome conditions.
This test can be requested for any singleton pregnancy, including in vitro fertilisation (IVF) pregnancies with egg donors.
It can now also be requested for ALL twin pregnancies (without X or Y) conceived naturally or by IVF using the patient’s own egg or a donor egg.
About the Ariosa Harmony™ Prenatal Test
DNA from the fetus circulates in the mother’s blood. Cell-free DNA (cfDNA) results from the natural breakdown of fetal cells (presumed to be mostly placental) and clears from the maternal system within hours of giving birth.
During a pregnancy, cfDNA can be tested to give the most accurate screening approach in estimating the risk of a fetus having a common chromosome condition sometimes called a trisomy. This occurs when there are three copies of a particular chromosome instead of the expected two. The test looks to detect the following trisomies:
- Trisomy 21 is the most common trisomy at the time of birth. Also called Down syndrome, it is associated with moderate to severe intellectual disabilities and may also lead to digestive disease, congenital heart defects and other malformations.
- Trisomy 18 (Edwards syndrome) and Trisomy 13 (Patau syndrome) are associated with a high rate of miscarriage. These babies are born with severe brain abnormalities and often have congenital heart defects as well as other birth defects. Most affected individuals die before or soon after birth, and very few survive beyond the first year of life.
- Sex chromosome conditions. The sex chromosomes (X and Y) determine whether we are male or female. X and Y chromosome conditions occur when there is a missing, extra, or incomplete copy of one of the sex chromosomes. The Harmony with X, Y test can assess risk for XXX, XYY, XXYY, XXY (Klinefelter syndrome), and a missing X chromosome in a girl (Turner syndrome). There is significant variability in the severity of these conditions, but most individuals have mild, if any, physical or behavioural features. If the mother is interested in having this optional testing, she should talk with her healthcare provider to determine if it is right for her. This option is not available for twin pregnancies.
This test is non-invasive as it involves taking a blood sample from the mother only.
The pregnancy is not put at risk of miscarriage or any other adverse outcomes that are associated with invasive testing procedures such as amniocentesis.
Clinical studies have shown that the Ariosa HarmonyTM Prenatal Test has up to 99% accuracy for assessing fetal trisomy risk.
A ‘high risk’ result is indicative of a high risk for a trisomy. The test identifies in singleton pregnancies more than 99% of fetuses with trisomy 21, 98% of fetuses with trisomy 18, and 80% of fetuses with trisomy 13, and 96% of fetuses with Turner Syndrome. X and Y analysis provides >99% accuracy for fetal sex. Accuracy for detecting other sex chromosome anomalies varies by condition.
After the test, the number of women required to have a CVS or an amniocentesis is less than 1%.
It is important to note that if the test results show there is a high risk that the fetus has trisomy 21, 18, 13 or sex chromosome conditions, it does not mean that the fetus definitely has one of these conditions, although it is highly likely. For this reason, in the event of a ‘high risk’ (or positive) result, follow-up testing by an invasive procedure is recommended.
In the same way if the test results show that there is a ‘low risk’ that the fetus has trisomy 21, 18, 13 or sex chromosome conditions, it is unlikely that the fetus has one of these conditions. However, there is a very small risk that not all trisomy fetuses will be detected.All results should be interpreted by a clinician in the context of clinical and familial data. Patients should continue with their usual scan appointments following testing.
Who can have the test?
The Ariosa Harmony – Prenatal Test can be ordered by the GP for women with pregnancies of at least 10 weeks’ gestational age. The test can also be ordered for all IVF singleton pregnancies, including those with egg donors. Samples from pregnant women with twins naturally conceived, or those conceived using the patient’s own egg, are also accepted.
What is the process?
Once the mother has taken an independent personal decision that she wants to have the non-invasive prenatal test performed, she will be asked to sign a consent form and her blood sample can be taken from a vein in her arm.
Will the mother need to have any other tests?
The Ariosa HarmonyTM Prenatal Test does not provide information on other rare chromosomal abnormalities. The non-invasive prenatal test does not provide information on other physical defects such as spina bifida, or information on fetal growth. It is therefore advisable that the mother has all the usual ultrasound scans during her pregnancy.
How much does it cost?
The cost of the test including doctor consult, blood test and delivery of results can be discussed with us over the telephone.