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One common worry that haunts mothers throughout pregnancy is what will happen if the baby is born too soon. Premature birth (birth before 37 weeks of pregnancy) is frighteningly common. Premature birth is on the rise in the United States and globally is the leading cause of death for newborns. Besides the nightmare scenario of losing your baby to prematurity, premature babies face other risks such as health problems and delays like trouble breathing, jaundice, cerebral palsy, and/or intellectual delays. If you are currently expecting, predicting your risk for premature birth is now possible and we’re excited to share this news with you today.
We know that premature birth is a reality for many families and we know that while medical technology and knowledge continue to advance, babies continue to be born too soon. Premature birth can have real and lasting consequences, sometimes leaving preemies with lifelong health or behavioral issues. In the U.S., we have one of the highest rates of premature birth rates in the developed world – approximately 1 in 10 babies are born before 37 weeks. Premature birth can result in issues because there are crucial developments in fetal development throughout every week of pregnancy.
Premature birth can happen to anyone. More than half of all women in the U.S. who had a premature birth did not have any known risk factors. How can you know if you are at risk for premature birth?
The PreTRM Test for Peace of Mind
There is now a first of its kind blood test to predict premature birth, the PreTRM test. It is the first and only prenatal blood test that is clinically validated to be an excellent predictor of premature birth in asymptomatic women who are pregnant with one baby, early in her pregnancy. Your doctor can order the PreTRM test between weeks 19-20 of your pregnancy and with the knowledge this prenatal test provides, she can manage your pregnancy going forward based on your test results.
Imagine the peace of mind that can come from this innovative blood test! If the PreTRM test shows that are high risk for premature birth, your doctor will know early on that you need to be monitored very closely. You can also wrap your head around the fact that you are at a higher risk for premature birth and prepare accordingly. If the test shows you are not at a high risk, you can worry a little less for the remainder of your pregnancy. With the PreTRM test, you and your doctor are equipped with the knowledge of whether you have a high premature birth risk right after your first trimester. There are interventions that your doctor can take to help prolong your pregnancy if you know that you are at risk.
If you are expecting, you need to talk to your doctor right away. Don’t wait! This blood test is ordered by your physician in the 19th or 20th week of pregnancy. Your doctor will get the results and then talk to you about how to manage your pregnancy going forward. Move forward through your pregnancy with the confidence and peace of mind that is available to you through the one and only prenatal test to predict premature birth, the PreTRM test.
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