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The three commonly used techniques for prenatal diagnosis provide choices for many women. Changes in genetic diagnostic techniques now mean that these choices become even wider. It is imperative that in counselling women for prenatal diagnosis a full understanding of the available techniques, advantages and disadvantages are understood. Occasionally the need for a specific sample will dictate which procedure is undertaken, but for simple karyotype, the most common indication, choices can usually be offered.
Units providing prenatal diagnosis must audit their outcomes, and provide this data to women in order that informed choice may be given. Because the median time to fetal loss is longer than had previously been recognized, women must be counselled that miscarriage can be a late event, particularly after amniocentesis.
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