Pregnancy Medical Tests … Should You Test?

Pregnant couple embracing

Some people want to know everything. Some are more comfortable with just the basics. You will find that as you go through your pregnancy, your doctor will talk to you about a variety of tests. Some are standard, such as an ultrasound, blood test, and urine samples. Other tests may be discussed and possibly recommended, but will only be performed with your permission.

Tests may check for possible birth defects or other medical conditions, which may put the baby or mom (to be) at risk. Women, who are over the age of thirty-five, have a family history of a genetic disease, have a medical condition themselves (i.e. heart disorder), or have had unsuccessful pregnancies before may be recommended for further medical testing.

Medical tests may be as simple and non-invasive as further blood work or an additional ultrasound. More invasive testing can include procedures like amniocentesis, which may help find out if a fetus has Down Syndrome.

Before agreeing to any testing, do your homework. Use the Internet, visit your local library, and talk with your doctor.

Be sure you understand why the doctor is recommending the test.

Ask if you are able to decline the testing. Don’t be afraid to ask for a second opinion.

Be sure to ask about the risk factors, both to you and your unborn child.

Think about the outcomes. For example, if you did find out that the fetus has a birth defect, what would you do? Would it change your current plans? How? Given this information, consider your options, and then decide to test or not.

Pregnancy is the start of an opportunity to be a good advocate for both you and your child. With each test, do your homework, ask questions, and make your own decisions. It will be the beginning of the strength and courage you will need throughout parenthood.


What do you think?

Pregnancy Medical Tests … Should You Test?

Tell us what you think!


  1. jessica says:

    how many tests are there

  2. sheenaholman says:

    I also was told that my first had down syndrome, but then like a day later they called back and said they miscalculated. I would have loved her either way.

  3. Cassy says:

    A friend of mine had a scary experience with genetic testing. She was actually told she miscarried her baby and then 2 weeks later went in for a follow up and her baby was fine (she may have been a twin and the twin miscarried). Then, at the 20+ week ultrasound they said her baby may have down syndrome so she should consider getting an amnio. She worried for weeks only to find out that her little one was perfectly normal. My husband and I contemplated genetic testing as well for our baby, here’s a good article that will help those of you who don’t know too much about it gain a better perspective as the doctors don’t tell you to much about it prior to getting it done. This article has an unbiased approach to prenatal genetic testing. Hopefully it helps!

  4. AnnieAmes says:

    Doing an ultrasound in a couple of weeks to check for Down Syndrom. Both hubs and I agree, we will love this baby no matter what!

  5. KaelinRae says:

    My doctor did inform me that there were tests I could have done to see if the baby had any defects, but I chose not to have them done. No matter what I will love this baby with all my heart.

  6. Marina says:

    If you are high risk or > 35 yrs. old these test can prepare you and give you options.

  7. MamaCat says:

    I’ve had more tests this time around but that was because I had high blood pressure at one appointment and something else at another. All the normal tests – Down Syndrome, Ultrasound and Glucose – came back just fine. Baby girl and I are both good. My doctor basically told me anything else was up to me if I felt I needed it.

  8. Sylvyana says:

    We did preconception genetic counselling. I don’t see the point in any additional testing.

  9. sheenaholman says:

    I got tested to see if my baby was down syndrome. Tests came back that she was. I didnt care as long as she was healthy. Turns out they had a number wrong that messed up the results.

  10. When I was pregnant with my first son in 2006, the docs thought the possbility of a birth defect was probable due to some blood tests and an ultrasoun that showed a mass on the kidney and brain. Their question to me was if I wanted to terminate the pregnancy. I would have nothing to do with it. Prayed hard.My son is beautiful 6 year old healthy boy, who loves wrestling, and works hard in school! So advice, don’t get too worked up about some off tests, chances are its nothing that will resolve further along in your pregnancy!

  11. Janice says:

    I only had medical tests my doctor needed to do for the sake of us both.

  12. Jeanetta says:

    I went to a specialist to have an amniocentesis test done, after he told me the odds of me having a miscarriage because of the test I said never mind…I’ll just wait and see if she has Down Syndrome after she is born.

  13. annie says:

    Pregnant, living with E as well but on Keppra (less risk). I am planning as well blood works and specific US but no ammio for now. Your thinking make sense to me. Keep on having a healthy pregnancy

  14. Valerie says:

    I’ve had to have some blood work done for testing, nothing to invasive. I see a specialist every 4 weeks, and have special ultrasounds done. I have epilepsy and have to take depakote to control my seizures. Depakote is very harmful to unborn babies. But luckily after two rounds of testing, everything came back normal. I would have continued with the pregnancy even if there was something wrong. But I wanted to be prepared to take care of a child with special needs, had there been something wrong,

  15. TriciaK7575 says:

    There are several tests I did with my first two children, but I did not do any that would show birth defects. I was going to have the children either way, and I didn’t feel the need for the additional stress.

  16. april says:

    I am doing the tests that are required for a twin pregnancy just to make sure that the twins don’t have ttts. The multiple screening test and any other blood test I will do but not amnio. I wont do that one unless the doctor says it is medical emergency.

  17. delora says:

    i think that getting the test for down syndrome is a good idea if there is known cases in the past im going to have mine done on august 1st

  18. Julie says:

    I did most of the tests my doctor recommend although I didn’t get the tests to see if the baby had downs syndrome or other mental defects. I figure no matter what she is going to be my baby girl and I am going to love her with everything in my soul.

  19. Anna says:

    I did all tests recommended by my OB. I want to know what to expect…

  20. I just found out I am pregnant and I wasn’t aware of all the testing. This is a great article and it really got me thinking. Time for some research! Thanks! =]

  21. tiffy says:

    i did what my doctor thought was best for me and the baby but i searched them myself to make sure the side effects werent bad

  22. i did all the tests, just to make sure the baby is healthy

  23. Sasoo says:

    I did all of the tests but asked questions before each one to make sure they were all necessary. No amnio though!

  24. this is my fourth,my boyfriend is going to be in afgahnistan through the pregnancy so to make it easier on myself since i dont drive..i am only going to do the most immportant ones

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