Can Cell-Free Fetal DNA Be Used to Diagnose the Cause of a Miscarriage?
Recurrent miscarriages carry a substantial physical and emotional burden for patients. Despite extensive testing, we are left with no explanation for recurrent miscarriages in a substantial number of cases. We assume that the majority of losses are due to genetic errors and chromosomal abnormalities in the fetus, but this assumption is difficult to prove in many cases. Can cell-free fetal DNA be used to diagnose the cause of a miscarriage?
Diagnosing the Cause of a Miscarriage
In recent years, cell-free fetal DNA (cffDNA) has been used to screen for chromosomal abnormalities during pregnancy. This technology has allowed many patients to avoid invasive testing, such as amniocentesis or chorionic villus sampling. Can cell-free fetal DNA be used to diagnose the cause of a miscarriage? New research suggests that this same cffDNA technology may provide information about the cause of a miscarriage for many women. With cffDNA, a simple blood test performed at the time of a miscarriage may provide valuable information about the chromosomal makeup of that pregnancy.
While additional research is needed, this preliminary study holds significant promise for patients who have suffered a miscarriage and are left without a clear explanation. At Fertility Centers of New England, patients come to us because they are struggling with infertility and/or miscarriages. We are proud to have helped thousands of patients realize their dream of becoming parents. If you have questions about your fertility or would like to set up a consultation, please contact us today.