Obstetrics and Gynecology

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Chorionic Villus Sampling

What is chorionic villus sampling?

Chorionic villus sampling (CVS) is a procedure that tests your baby for genetic problems. The test can detect more than 200 disorders. Your physician can help you understand the meaning of your specific test results. If the results indicate a disorder, our team of physicians will counsel you on how the condition may be treated either during or after pregnancy and the special needs your child may have after birth.

Describe the procedure:

There are two types of CVS procedures: transcervical (through your cervix) and transabdominal (through your belly). During the transcervical approach, a thin plastic tube is inserted through your vagina and cervix to reach the placenta. Using ultrasound, your doctor will guide the tube into the best area for removing a small sample of chorionic villus tissue. During the transabdominal approach, a thin needle is inserted through your abdomen and uterus and into the placenta. Using ultrasound, your doctor will guide the needle to the best place to remove the tissue and draw it into a syringe. Both procedures take only a few minutes after initial prep. For both procedures, the sample is sent to a laboratory for evaluation, which can take about 2 weeks.

Who is a good candidate for chorionic villus sampling?

Some people (both women and men) are at greater risk for passing on genetic disorders to their children. Both age and genetic history of both parents can have roles determining a need for CVS.