Integrated test during pregnancy

The integrated test is done during pregnancy to check for Down syndrome and for open neural tube problems. The test is done in two stages at two different times during the pregnancy. You will get the results after the tests in the second trimester are done.

  • The first stage can be done around 10 to 13 weeks of pregnancy. The tests done for this stage are:
    • An ultrasound. The ultrasound can show the age of the baby and measure the thickness of the skin at the back of the baby's neck (nuchal translucency, or NT).
    • Blood tests done to measure the level of two substances in the blood called pregnancy-associated plasma protein A (PAPP-A) and beta-human chorionic gonadotropin hormone (beta-hCG).
  • The second stage can usually be done between weeks 15 and 20. The tests done for this stage are all blood tests and include:
    • Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP).
    • Beta-human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG).
    • Unconjugated estriol (a form of estrogen).
    • Inhibin A.

The results of all these tests are reviewed to see if levels are higher or lower than expected, and the results are reported after the second stage.

Last Updated: May 14, 2008

Author: Sandy Jocoy, RN

Medical Review: Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine & Siobhan M. Dolan, MD, MPH - Reproductive Genetics

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