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All You Need to Know about Double and Quadruple Marker Test

Max Lab

Aug 06, 2022

A double marker test and quadruple test are recommended for a pregnant woman. These blood tests find out the possibility of any neurological complications in the unborn child.

What are Double and Quadruple Marker Tests?

double marker test, also known as maternal serum screening, is recommended for a pregnant woman to check for any neurological disorder in the baby. Usually, this test is prescribed by the doctor in the first trimester of pregnancy as a part of comprehensive screening. If any irregularities are found in the chromosomal growth of the baby, then it may affect its overall development and lead to a severe medical condition. Down syndrome and Edward’s syndrome are some of the medical disorders that can be identified by a dual marker blood test. 

The window for this test screening is small, so doctors recommend this test between 11 and 14 weeks of pregnancy. A double marker test checks for free beta HCG and PAPPA-A markers in the blood. However, it is important to note that this test predicts the risk of complications but does not confirm any abnormalities. When the double marker test is done, the test report shows a result in the normal, high, or low range. The normal range of the test report indicates that there are no irregularities in the baby’s growth and a low risk of developing a chromosomal disorder.

Besides this, another test recommended for a pregnant woman in her second trimester is the quadruple marker test. This is a prenatal test that is conducted to check four important pregnancy hormones. These hormones are:

  • Alpha-fetoprotein is a protein produced by the foetus.
  • Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) and Inhibin A, are hormones produced by the placenta
  • Unconjugated estriol (uE3), is a hormone produced in the placenta and foetus.

If a hormone level is not measured in the test, then it is called a triple screen test in pregnancy. As the level of all these hormones changes from time to time, the woman’s pregnancy stage must be known. A quadruple screen test identifies the presence or absence of genetic defects in the unborn baby. Other than this, the test is also recommended to find out the possibility of developing certain medical conditions such as neurological problems, Down syndrome, and problems in the spinal cord. If the test report of the quadruple test has an AFP level that is within the normal value, then it means that the baby is healthy. If the test results are higher or lower, then it indicates the presence of down syndrome or spina bifida in the baby.

All these tests are highly effective in checking for any abnormalities in the baby. Doctors suggest expecting mothers undergo this test to ensure a healthy baby birth.

When is the Double Marker Test or Quadruple Marker Test required?

Both of these tests are prescribed by the doctor to a pregnant woman to check for any unusual growth of the foetus. However, both of these tests are recommended at different phases of pregnancy. A double-marker test is prescribed in the first trimester and a quadruple marker test is prescribed in the second trimester of pregnancy. Before prescribing these tests, the medical professional considers several factors, including:

  • Age of pregnant woman
  • Family medical history of congenital disabilities
  • Diabetes
  • Baby’s gestational age

For women above the age of 35, doctors usually suggest they go for this routine screen test to rule out any possibility of any birth disorder in the foetus. However, it is the personal choice of a woman to undergo this test or not. These tests may also be ordered along with other prenatal tests.

Benefits of Taking These Tests

It is always good to check for any kind of difficulty in pregnancy. If a woman is over the age of 35 or comes under the high-risk category, then she should undergo these tests. A normal value in the test report of a quadruple marker test or double marker test will give a sense of satisfaction. If the test report is positive, there is no need to worry as these children can lead a healthy and normal life. However, being aware of any kind of disorder in an unborn baby will help in planning the pregnancy and birth of the child to give them the best life.

How are the Tests Performed?

These tests are routine tests that have a simple procedure. One can book a double marker test, triple marker test, or quadruple marker test online from the Max Lab’s website, right from the comfort of their home. A phlebotomist visits the home to collect a blood sample from the pregnant woman. The blood is taken from the vein and stored in a container. The sample is tested for the respective tests. The entire process does not take more than 5–10 minutes.

Test Reports Analysis

The double marker test report analysis is done to merely predict the possibility of disorder in the baby. It does not confirm the abnormalities. The test report comes with a positive or negative mark. A positive screen indicates a high chance of developing a disorder in the baby. A negative screen indicates a normal value for the double marker test.

The Bottom Line

Max Lab has an affordable price for double marker tests and other prenatal tests. We provide 100% accurate and reliable test reports. One can book the test online and get the blood tests done at their home. The test reports are available on the website that can be downloaded. Carry this test report to the medical professional for interpretation and getting proper treatment.

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