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Pregnancy: Screening

Volume 462: debated on Wednesday 4 July 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many amniocentesis procedures were carried out in each of the last three years; how many of the procedures resulted in a diagnosis for Down’s Syndrome (Trisomy 21) or other chromosomal abnormalities; and how many of these resulted in a termination. (147416)

[holding answer 3 July 2007]: Information on the total number of amniocentesis procedures carried out in the last three years is not collected centrally. Information on the number of amniocentesis tests that resulted in a diagnosis of Down’s Syndrome and other chromosomal abnormalities and the number of terminations as a result of Down’s Syndrome and other chromosomal abnormalities is in the following table.

Abortions performed under Section l(l)(d)* of the Abortion Act 1967 with amniocentesis used in the diagnosis of chromosomal anomalies, residents, England and Wales, 2004-06

Abortions performed because of Down’s Syndrome

Down’s Syndrome diagnosed using amniocentesis

Abortions performed because of chromosomal anomalies other than Down’s Syndrome

Chromosomal anomalies other than Down’s Syndrome diagnosed using amniocentesis

2006

436

195

336

114

2005

429

199

319

136

2004

419

183

307

104

Notes:

* That there is a substantial risk that if the child were born it would suffer from such physical or mental abnormalities as to be seriously handicapped.

Amniocentesis used as a method of diagnosis with or without an ultrasound and/or chorionic.

Information about method of diagnosis is missing for about 8 per cent. of abortions performed under Section l(l)(d)* of the Abortion Act 1967.