[Triple test for all pregnant women? A health technology assessment]

Nohr-Jensen L
Record ID 32002000823
Authors' objectives:

The purpose of this project is to perform a health technology assessment of the triple test as a method of screening pregnant women for foetuses with chromosomal abnormalities or severe malformations.

Authors' results and conclusions: From a technical standpoint, the triple test is a reliable method of estimating risks. Using fewer invasive procedures such as taking samples from placenta or the amniotic fluid, approximately 70% of foetuses with a trisomy 21 constitution are diagnosed compared to the 30% when following the recommendations of the Danish National Health Board regarding prenatal diagnostics (ages 35 and above). Moreover, approximately 104 foetuses with severe malformations are diagnosed compared to approximately 40 when using current guidelines. Using fewer invasive procedures results in a sizeable reduction in the number of induced abortions of presumed healthy foetuses. The attitude towards screening is reflected in the fact, that 80% of pregnant women would like to see the test offered to all pregnant women in Denmark. There is, however, some disagreement as to what extent the screening creates a sense of security or insecurity From a organisational point of view, it is possible to implement the triple test, but it should result in a change of structure due to reduction in the number of invasive procedures. Moreover, it has been shown that current practice does not follow the National Health Boards recommendations. By establishing screening centres, a more homogenous offer is achieved nation-wide, and concomitantly opens up the possibility of better co-ordination as well as quality assurance and development.
Authors' recomendations: It is therefore recommended, that the offer of triple test as a risk estimator is made available. The offer should be made to all pregnant women so that the pregnant woman, regardless of her age, is given the opportunity to take a well thought-out position on having an amniotic fluid test done.
Authors' methods: Overview
Project Status: Completed
Year Published: 2000
English language abstract: An English language summary is available
Publication Type: Not Assigned
Country: Denmark
MeSH Terms
  • Mass Screening
  • Down Syndrome
  • Prenatal Diagnosis
Organisation Name: Danish Centre for Evaluation and Health Technology Assessment
Contact Address: National Board of Health, PO Box 1881, Islands Brygge 67, DK-2300 Copenhagen S, Denmark. Tel: 45 72 22 74 48; Fax: 45 72 22 74 07/67
Contact Name: dacehta@sst.dk
Contact Email: dacehta@sst.dk
Copyright: Danish Centre for Evaluation and Health Technology Assessment (DACEHTA) (formerly DIHTA)
This is a bibliographic record of a published health technology assessment from a member of INAHTA or other HTA producer. No evaluation of the quality of this assessment has been made for the HTA database.