[Prenatal diagnosis. I: Prenatal diagnosis program at the Medical Genetics Unit of the Universidad de Zulia, Maracaibo, Venezuela].Invest Clin. 1998 Jun; 39(2):97-116.IC
The Prenatal Diagnosis Program of the Medical Genetic Unit of University of Zulia has the following objectives: Identification of Genetic Risk Factors (GRF) in those couples who attend to the Prenatal Genetic Clinic, application of different prenatal diagnostic procedures (PDP), and providing adequate genetic counseling. The goal of this paper is to show preliminary results obtained between January 1993 and December 1996. Three hundred and twenty one pregnant women were analyzed by determining the GRF and taking into account the genetic clinical history. The GRF analyzed were: Advanced maternal age (AMA), congenital malformation history (CMH), previous child with chromosomic anomalies (PCCA), defects of neural tube history (DNTH), congenital heart disease history (CHDH), any parent carrier of chromosomic anomaly (PCA), habitual abortion (HA), abnormal fetal echography (AFE), altered maternal serum levels of alpha-feto-protein (AMSAFP) and OTHERS: exposure to teratogenic agents, history of Mendelian diseases, maternal systemic diseases and anxiety in the mother or in her partner. The PDP was designed according to the GRF, which included fetal echography (FE), fetal echocardiography (FEc), amniocentesis (AMN), chordocentesis (CCT) and AMSAFP. Results showed that 58.4% of the expectant mothers asked for counseling during the 2nd trimester, 70% of the total showed only one GRF, and AMA was the most frequent GRF found (40.3%), followed by PCCA, AFE, CHDH, HA, DNTH, PCA, and OTHERS in that order. The specific PDP applied to the identified GRF allowed a health evaluation of the fetus. The GRF identification gave the opportunity of establishing a Prenatal Diagnostic Program producing a response to the couple's needs and showed the utility of an integral and multidisciplinary management directed to any expecting mother in order to identify any high GRF.