Danish Sonographers’ Experiences of the Introduction of “Moderate Risk” in Prenatal Screening for Down Syndrome

Anne Møller; Ida Vogel; Olav Bjørn Petersen; Stina Lou

Objective. The aim of the study was to determine sonographers’ experiences with the introduction of an offer of noninvasive prenatal testing (NIPT) to a new moderate-risk (MR) group at the combined first-trimester prenatal screening (cFTS). Study Design. A qualitative approach consisting of seven semistructured interviews with five sonographers (midwives and nurses). Data was analyzed using thematic analysis. Main Outcome Measures. Sonographers’ perception of offering NIPT to women in MR. Results. The sonographers understood NIPT as a positive development in prenatal screening due to a safe procedure and high detection rates for trisomies 13, 18, and 21. Prior to the introduction of MR, the sonographers were concerned about inducing worry in pregnant women in this new risk group. However, the pregnant women responded very positively, which the sonographers attributed to several factors such as the women’s overall reason for participating in prenatal screening, the simplicity of the NIPT procedure, and the communicative strategies used by the sonographers. The strategies included all sonographers using the same words and explanations, emphasizing that statistics were in the women’s favor, initiating the presentation of MR with a positive message, and downplaying the MR category. Conclusion. Sonographers’ communicative strategies succeeded in limiting worry in pregnant women in MR. As such, the findings are valuable for health professionals, who are responsible for communicating about prenatal screening results and diagnostic options.

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Udgivelsesform Videnskabelige artikler
År 2018
Udgiver Journal of Pregnancy


Stina Lou Fleron

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Stina Lou Fleron