How Genetic Screening Prevents Disease in Infants

Preimplantation genetic screening (PGS) may be done as a part of fertility treatment and can virtually eliminate the chance of having a child with a genetic disease. This is a step parents can take in order to help prevent diseases in their child.

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During IVF treatment, eggs are fertilized in a laboratory setting.  The resulting embryos are then monitored as they develop before being transferred into the mother or frozen for use during a subsequent cycle.  During this stage, the number of cells present within the embryo continues to increase as the embryo develops.  One or two cells may be removed from the embryo via microsurgery and analyzed.  This process does not harm the embryos.

There are two methods of analysis.  One is to verify the presence of the correct number of chromosomes.  Humans should have 23 pairs of chromosomes.  One of each chromosome is donated from each parent.  If the pairs do not link correctly, genetic abnormalities result, which are often detrimental for the embryo’s development.  Embryos that are found to have genetic abnormalities are not transferred.

The second method is to look for the presence of a particular disease.  This testing process can be particularly useful for individuals who are carriers of a particular disease. Should the disease be found in an embryo, it will not be used during transfers.

Prenatal Testing

While the testing process is extremely accurate, it is not 100%.  Therefore, it is important to have prenatal testing during pregnancy to ensure that your child has the best healthcare they can receive.  This process can also help to identify other issues that may not have been identifiable via preimplantation screening.

For additional information on the use of PGS during pregnancy, contact the New Hope Fertility Center team today.  Please click the link below to enter your information and New Hope will contact you, or simply call 212-517-7676.  Thank you.

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