Combined Ultrasound and Maternal Serum Beta HCG in the Detection of Down’s Syndrome in Early Pregnancy


AbstractObjective: To assess the value of maternal serum beta HCG (human chorionic gonadotrophin) and ultrasound nuchal translucency (NT) measurement at 10-14 weeks of pregnancy in the detection of Down’s syndrome. Methods: The study conducted at Al-Yarmouk Teaching Hospital: departments of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Neonatology, Ultrasound and Laboratories. One hundred pregnant women in their 10-14 weeks of gestation were included. Fifty of them as a high risk group and 50 as a low risk group for the development of Down’s syndrome. Maternal serum beta HCG and fetal NT by ultrasound were measured for all of them and evaluated later on for the outcome of their pregnancy regarding Down’s syndrome.Results: Beta HCG in maternal blood was found to be significantly increased in pregnancies ended with Down’s syndrome. Nuchal translucency was found to be increased in pregnancies ended with Down’s syndrome. There was a highly significant correlation between a positive family history of Down’s syndrome and pregnancy outcome with this chromosomal abnormality but no significant relation was found between maternal age and Down’s syndrome. Conclusion: Our data supported the relation between increased maternal serum beta HCG and increased fetal nuchal translucency at 10-14 weeks of gestation, and pregnancy outcome with Down’s syndrome.Key words: Down’s syndrome, Ultrasound, Beta HCG