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Conducting a DNA Test During Pregnancy: Is It Possible?

For some people, doubt sets in early, well before the color of the child's eyes or hair or even the child's face can be seen. DNA test requests for a fetus are made at the request of either parent, either to confirm the paternity link or to contest it. Its practice is therefore subject to the consent of the expectant mothers.

DNA testing during pregnancy is indeed possible. Laboratories today have the technical and scientific knowledge as well as high-precision devices and are capable of conducting prenatal tests.

This represents a real revolution in the field. Until now, it was necessary to wait for the birth of the child before being able to establish the man's paternity. Now, a simple blood test without amniocentesis allows for the truth to be known. This method is considered non-invasive yet very reliable. It therefore poses no vital risk to the fetus since the sample is taken from the mother. Indeed, the mother's blood contains fetal DNA from the 12th week of amenorrhea onwards. Therefore, the test cannot be conducted before the fourth month of pregnancy.

It is also worth mentioning two other more invasive and substantial methods: the sampling of chorionic villus and an amniotic fluid sample. The former can be obtained by chorionic biopsy, that is through the cervix (between the 10th and 12th week of gestation), while the latter by amniocentesis (between the 14th and 16th week of gestation). These two options, mainly used in a medical context to early detect genetic diseases or fetal infections, are rather not recommended due to the low but existing risk of premature birth, miscarriage, fetal death due to an infection of the environment following the procedure, or injury to the fetus.

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