As moms, it is my belief that our natural worry skills kick into high gear during pregnancy, and then never leave us. Having experienced two high-risk pregnancies, my personal stories involved bed rest, uncertainty, isolation, and lots of worries.
I remember discussing some risks of premature birth with my healthcare provider during my first trimester. But, as a registered nurse with years of women’s health experience specializing in fertility, I wanted my doctors to be able to predict my risk of premature birth and proactively monitor my pregnancy more closely.
A simple prenatal blood test drawn in the 19th or 20th week of pregnancy by your healthcare provider is now available.
The PreTRM test is the first and only prenatal blood test that is clinically validated to be an excellent predictor of preterm birth in all asymptomatic women who are pregnant with one baby, early in her pregnancy.
Having this dual-role perspective as a nurse and patient, I can genuinely appreciate how clinically beneficial it is for doctors and patients to be able to consult with the results of the PreTRM test. With these test results, a determination can be made to monitor a pregnancy more closely and discuss potential birth plans.
Let’s be real here, pregnancy hormones can fuel turbo-level emotions. The PreTRM test can benefit women to feel empowered by knowing if they have a high-risk result early on in their pregnancy and make necessary plans with their doctor. A low-risk result is also mentally beneficial by providing some peace of mind especially in women who are understandably anxious.
Often as a nurse, I advocate for women to make informed decisions about their healthcare. Here is some useful information:
- 1 in 10 pregnancies end in premature birth; this is one of the highest rates in the developed world.
- There is uncertainty over why certain women are at increased risk for preterm birth (defined as before 37 weeks). Traditional methods fail to identify the great majority (more than 85%) of asymptomatic women carrying a single child, resulting in too many babies being born too early with health problems that can last a lifetime.
- The PreTRM test was clinically validated by the PAPR study (Proteomic Assessment of Preterm Risk) and published in a top-tier peer-reviewed journal (American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology) in May 2016. This study, the largest of its kind, was a multi-center, prospective study designed to develop and validate the PreTRM test. The study collected blood samples from 5,501 pregnant women across 11 clinical sites and was representative of asymptomatic singleton pregnancies (carrying only one child) in the U.S.