Objective: To investigate pregnant women’s level of future interest in noninvasive prenatal diagnosis (NIPD) and what
factors might affect expected uptake of this testing.
Method: Written questionnaires were administered to women in their third trimester.
Results: One hundred fourteen women returned the questionnaire (80.9% response rate). Of these, 71.9% reported interest in NIPD, 22.7% were ambivalent, and 5.4% were uninterested. Safety of the fetus was the single most important factor in 75% of women’s decisions. Factors associated with increased interest in NIPD included: older age (p = 0.036), higher education ( p = 0.013), Caucasian or Asian ethnicity (p = 0.011), and higher likelihood to terminate an affected pregnancy ( p = 0.002). Nearly 20% of women reported that they would do whatever their doctor recommended regarding NIPD, and 94.4% of women wished to meet with a genetic counselor at some point to discuss NIPD.
Conclusion: The majority of pregnant women report hypothetical interest in NIPD, primarily because of increased safety for the fetus, although a significant minority are uninterested or ambivalent. Discussions with healthcare providers regarding NIPD, and their recommendations, are likely to be an important factor in women’s decisions about this testing. As such, adequate discussion of the implications of prenatal diagnostic testing will be critical.