Double Marker Test: Procedure, Normal Range, and Benefits

double marker test

A double marker test helps determine the susceptibility of an unborn child to physical and mental ailments. Even though it’s not mandatory, expecting mothers over 35 with an elevated risk of chromosomal issues should get the test done. The best time to undergo a dual marker test is the gestational age between 11 and 14 weeks. 

Procedure for the Double Marker Test

A dual marker test usually starts with an ultrasound examination. After that, a blood test is done to look for two things in a pregnant woman.

  • The first market is Free Beta hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin). It is a glycoprotein hormone that comes from the placenta during pregnancy. A high level of this marker indicates a risk of Trisomy 18, leading to Down syndrome.
  • The second marker is a plasma protein called PAPP-A (pregnancy-associated plasma protein). A low level of PAPP-A often leads to Down Syndrome. 

Normal Range of the Double Market Test

Your double marker test result will indicate results pointing to low, moderate, or high risk. Low risk is a normal result. It indicates the baby has a low chance of developing chromosomal abnormalities. 

However, it is crucial to understand that a low-risk result does not indicate that your child has no chance of being born with chromosomal defects. The test only looks for indicators of conditions like Down syndrome and Trisomy 18. A child might have other chromosomal defects. 

Benefits of the Double Market Test

The double marker test enables doctors to find out the following:

  • Whether your fetus is at risk of any physical ailment
  • Whether your child is susceptible to mental issues
  • Whether your child has down syndrome
  • Whether your child has Trisomy 18, which leads to mental challenges and various birth defects
  • Whether your child has Trisomy 21, which leads to heart disorders, mental disorders, and issues related to vital organs

Are There Any Risks Associated with a Double Marker Test?

Since the double marker test is non-invasive, no risk is associated with it. The test is similar to a routine blood test, and patients can eat and drink normally before it. You can always contact your healthcare provider in case of any concern about the test or your pregnancy. 

Final Words

A double marker test is beneficial and helps avoid unforeseen complications after a woman gives birth. Get it done from a reliable lab for accurate results and be relieved about the health of your unborn child.