What happens if the quad marker screen results are normal?

Normal levels of AFP, UE, hCG and inhibin-A strongly indicate that you have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby. In over 98% of pregnancies, normal quad marker screen results predict healthy babies and births without major complications. However, there are no prenatal tests that can guarantee your baby and pregnancy will be completely healthy or without complications.

What happens if the quad marker screen results are abnormal?

Quad marker screen results that are not in the normal range do not necessarily mean there is a problem in your pregnancy.

The quad marker screen is used for screening only, which means it can only assess your risk of having a baby with a certain birth defect. It is not used to diagnose the particular problem that may be present. If the quad marker screen results are not in the normal range, further tests such as ultrasound or amniocentesis may be necessary.

Out of 1,000 pregnant women, approximately 50 will have quad marker screen results that indicate an increased risk for having a baby with an open neural tube defect. Of those 50 women, only 1 or 2 will actually have a baby with an open neural tube defect. About 40 women will have quad marker screen results that show an increased risk for having a baby with Down syndrome and 1 or 2 will actually have a baby with Down syndrome.

###

Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy