Procedures & Tests - Percutaneous Umbilical Blood Sampling (PUBS)

(This procedure/test may also be known as: PUBS)

This test obtains fetal blood by guiding a needle into the umbilical cord. It's primarily used in addition to an ultrasound and amniocentesis if your health care provider needs to quickly check your baby's chromosomes for defects or disorders or is concerned that your baby may have another problem, such as a low platelet count or a thyroid condition.

The advantage to this test is its speed. There are situations (such as when a fetus shows signs of distress) in which it's helpful to know whether the fetus has a fatal chromosomal defect. If the fetus is suspected to be anemic or to have a platelet disorder, this test is the only way to confirm this because it provides a blood sample rather than amniotic fluid. It also allows transfusion of blood or needed fluids into the baby while the needle is in place.

This test may be used:
after an abnormality has been noted on an ultrasound
when results from other tests, such as amniocentesis, aren't conclusive
if the fetus may have Rh disease
if you've been exposed to an infectious disease that could potentially
affect fetal development

Risks are associated with this procedure include miscarriage or infection. The test may be performed after 18 weeks. Results are usually available within three days.

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