Nuchal Translucency (NT)

Nuchal translucency (NT) is a special ultrasound done at 12 to 14 weeks gestation that looks at and measures the thickness of an area behind your baby_s neck. There is a correlation between the nuchal thickness and your baby's risk of having certain genetic conditions such as Down syndrome. Blood tests are done at two different occasions in conjunction with the NT test to help make the results more accurate. The first blood test is also done at approximately 10 to 14 weeks gestation. It will be interpreted along with the NT test and together they are called the first trimester screen. The second one, done at about 15 to 20 weeks gestation, is called the second trimester screen. The final result, received after all of the tests have been done, will be given as a probability, the chance, of having Down syndrome and can therefore be a little confusing to interpret. It is always good to go over the results with your health care provider or a genetic counselor.If the results are not reassuring and you want to get a more definitive test, talk to your health care provider about getting an amniocentesis or CVS done.