Prenatal Testing Reduced After Women Learn of Risks

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Prenatal Testing Reduced After Women Learn of Risks
Prenatal Testing Reduced After Women Learn of Risks

(HealthDay News) — A computerized, interactive decision-support guide and elimination of financial barriers to testing can reduce use of prenatal testing, according to a study published in the September 24 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Miriam Kuppermann, PhD, MPH, from the University of California in San Francisco, and colleagues examined data from a randomized trial involving 710 women who had not yet undergone screening or diagnostic testing and remained pregnant at 11 weeks of gestation. Participants were randomized to a computerized, interactive decision-support guide and access to prenatal testing with no out-of-pocket expenses (357 participants) or to usual care according to current guidelines (353 participants).

The researchers found that women randomized to the intervention group were less likely to have invasive diagnostic testing (5.9 vs. 12.3%; odds ratio, 0.45) and more likely to forgo testing (25.6 vs. 20.4%; odds ratio, 3.30) compared with those randomized to the control group. The intervention group also had higher knowledge scores (9.4 vs. 8.6 on a 15-point scale) and were more likely to correctly estimate the amniocentesis-related miscarriage risk and the age-adjusted risk of carrying a fetus with trisomy 21 (odds ratios, 1.95 and 1.66, respectively).

"If validated in additional populations, this approach may result in more informed and preference-based prenatal testing decision making and fewer women undergoing testing," the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the biotechnology industry.

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