About Prenatal Testing
Throughout your prenatal care at the Caring Center for Women, we may offer or recommend certain tests to be administered to discover more about your developing baby. Our doctors, Drs. Irwin, Blaue, Fay, Reid, Schumann, and Hermann are board-certified or board-eligible obstetrician-gynecologists who administer prenatal testing for expectant parents in New Braunfels and San Marcos, TX. These tests may help identify potential risks, disorders, deformities, and more. Early pregnancy prenatal tests like the Ultra Screen or the cystic fibrosis blood test can give you some insight as to how your baby is developing. In the second trimester or earlier, you may be asked to have a gestational diabetes screening, which is for your health as much as it is for the baby. We will screen you for gestational diabetes at 24 – 28 weeks and may repeat it as needed. Read more about our some of our more requested prenatal tests below.
"Lauren has a great personable presence. She introduced herself and told me about her family-that was awesome. She is good at listening and asking questions. She was genuinely open to helping with issues.I was completely impressed and the office staff was great too."- M.P. / ZocDoc / Mar 28, 2018
"Dr. Fay is the best! She is so kind and always makes me feel so comfortable. She is excellent at explaining things in terms you can understand. She has been my doctor for 8 years. Dr. Fay and Dr. Hermann delivered both of my children. Everyone in the office is so friendly too."- T.M. / Facebook / Jun 08, 2018
"I am a patient of Dr. Fay and have had a great experience so far and am at the 17 week mark. All the staff have been kind and helpful. Dr. Fay takes the time to answer your questions and has a wonderful bedside manner. She makes you feel super comfortable! Highly recommend!"- G.S. / Google / Jun 07, 2018
"Today I met what I thought impossible: a doctor who sat NEXT to me, looked at me in the eye, listened to my medical concerns with obvious empathy, and advised me with knowledge and kindness. Dr. Teresa Irwin is a shining star in my unfortunate experience of medical mediocrity. This beautiful doctor exudes confidence while remaining humble and goes the extra mile to satisfy/relieve suffering patients. I thank her for her service and I recommend her with total and absolute confidence to anyone"- M.P. / Healthgrades / May 17, 2018
"Very professional and informative. Great personality. Made us feel welcome and comfortable."- C.Z. / ZocDoc / May 16, 2018
Our prenatal testing can be scheduled in the first, second, or third trimester based on the test or screen performed.
To indicate chromosomal and/or fetal abnormalities, you may choose to have an Ultra Screen (blood test) in addition to your prenatal exam. While it is not a diagnostic tool, the Ultra Screen may give you an idea of the chances your baby may have birth defects or disorders. You may have further testing, such as an amniocentesis, performed at the doctor's request (if wanted).
Newly expectant parents can have genetic testing for cystic fibrosis early in the pregnancy performed by mouth swab or blood draw. This test is to see if the baby is a carrier or will develop this mucus-building, inherited disorder of the lungs and digestive tract.
The quad screen is an important blood test performed in the second trimester (15 – 18 weeks) to assess the risks of developing neural birth defects or chromosomal deficiencies like Down syndrome, Trisomy 18, spina bifida, and anencephaly. This blood panel will test for Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP), human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), Estriol, and Inhibin A markers. These are all hormones or substances in the body that pass between the fetus and mother.
Group B Strep (GBS)
Group B Strep (GBS) is a very important diagnostic test that may be repeated several times in the late stages of your pregnancy. Why? Group B Strep is a bacterium found in the vagina and rectum that when exposed to your newborn may cause sepsis, pneumonia, or meningitis. We will take swab samples from you starting in week 35 to make sure you are not carrying an infection to pass on to your baby, which may manifest as a fatal infection of the blood, lungs, lining or fluid of the brain, or spinal cord. It takes approximately 2 – 3 days to see your results.
Every expectant mother will be tested for gestational diabetes at our office. We test your insulin levels so that if you are not producing the right amount of insulin during your pregnancy, we can manage it with diet and possibly medication. If you were overweight before your pregnancy, over age 35, and/or have a family history of diabetes, you are at a higher risk of developing gestational diabetes, glucose intolerance, or carbohydrate intolerance.
In the second trimester, your doctor may perform a more invasive testing, an amniocentesis, to further analyze the amniotic fluid for chromosomal and fetal abnormalities like Down syndrome, birth defects, and other genetic conditions.
Plan Your Procedure
When You Want to Know
Many prenatal tests are not mandatory but available at the Caring Center for Women. Your doctor may recommend tests that can benefit your health (like gestational diabetes testing for insulin resistance), and others to give you information on what is developing in your womb. When you want to know if your baby has chromosomal disorders or other birth defects, we are here to guide you through the process. Schedule today.