Amniocentesis is a procedure that takes a sample of fetal water (amniotic fluid) from the uterus for diagnostic (water fetal analysis) or treatment purposes. Amniocentesis is usually done between the 16th and 20th week of pregnancy. Fetal water is a fluid that surrounds and protects the fetus during pregnancy. The procedure takes 30-45 minutes.


• For the purpose of genetic testing (testing for the presence of certain inherited diseases, such as Down syndrome).
• In order to test the maturity of the fetal lung.
• To detect fetal infection or other fetal diseases (assessing the severity of anemia in babies who have Rh sensitization).
• For therapeutic purposes (eg removal of excess fetal water).

Your doctor may suggest this procedure if:
• the results of prenatal testing are suspicious of the existence of hereditary diseases (positive double and triple test).
• In a previous pregnancy, the fetus had a genetic (chromosomal) disorder or neural tube defect.
• You are over 35 years old.
• You or a partner in the family have some hereditary diseases (Down syndrome, Patau, Edwards…).
• ultrasound findings indicate a change that requires further examination.


• At the beginning of the procedure, the doctor uses ultrasound to determine the exact position of the fetus in the uterus (the doctor uses a probe-small plastic device that shows the fetus and its position with the help of ultrasonic waves). The procedure is performed in the supine position.
• Usually this procedure is performed without anesthesia. Your doctor will cleanse your stomach with a disinfectant. With the help of ultrasound, they will guide a thin needle through the abdominal wall to the uterus. When the needle enters the uterus, the doctor will draw a small amount of amniotic fluid into the syringe and then pull the needle out of the abdomen. The amount of fetal water that can be taken depends on the age of pregnancy. You may experience mild discomfort during this procedure.


Very rarely, the following complications can occur: water leakage, miscarriage, needle injury, Rh sensitization, or infection.


• If the amniocentesis is performed before the 20th week of pregnancy, the bladder should be full, (you need to drink 3-4 glasses of water within half an hour and a half before the examination).
• If your amniocentesis is performed after the 20th week of pregnancy, your bladder should be empty.
• It is best to have the procedure accompanied by a partner, family member or friend to provide you with emotional support and facilitate your return home.


• The doctor will continue to monitor the fetus for some time with ultrasound. you may feel mild discomfort or have cramps. In the meantime, a sample of the fetal water is sent to the laboratory for analysis. If the DNA method (QF-PCR method) is used, the results are waiting for 24 hours, and if the sample is analyzed by the classical method, the results are expected up to 3 weeks.
• Contact your doctor if you notice: swelling of the vagina or vaginal bleeding, severe uterine cramps lasting for several hours, fever, redness and inflammation (at the point of needle entry), increased fetal activity or lack of movement of the fetus.
• After the procedure, you need to stand still. It is recommended that you avoid hard work, training or intercourse a day or two after the procedure.