At your initial booking appointment, you will be offered a range of important tests to screen for certain conditions that may affect your pregnancy.

These screening tests include:

  • Booking blood tests
    • Blood group and antibody screening
    • Full blood count (including anaemia testing)
    • Infectious diseases
  • Sickle cell and thalassaemia
  • Ultrasound scans to screen for fetal anomalies
  • Blood screening tests for Down’s, Edwards’ and Patau syndromes (combined/quadruple test)

Click here to download a leaflet about these screening tests (PDF 4mb)

Ultrasound tests

During your pregnancy you will be offered at least two ultrasound scans:

  1. Dating scan: this is usually done between 10-14 weeks of pregnancy.
  2. Anomaly scan: this is usually done around 20 weeks (18+0 to 20+6).

It is important for you to be aware that ultrasound scanning is a form of screening and is done to perform important checks on the health and development of your baby.

Combined test

All pregnant women in England are offered the combined test for Down’s syndrome (and Edwards’ and Patau syndromes) as part of the NHS Fetal Anomaly Screening Programme (FASP).

The combined test involves a blood test and a nuchal translucency (NT) ultrasound scan in the first trimester of pregnancy, normally at 12 weeks. If you have found out that you are pregnant after this time, you can still be screened for Down’s syndrome (and Edwards’ and Patau syndromes). Second trimester screening (called the quadruple test) for Down’s syndrome can be done between 14 and 20 weeks although it is not as accurate as the combined test.

Contact us

For more information about screening, please speak to your community midwife or our screening co-ordinator on 01423 553051 or 01423 555429

Useful links

Further information about the National Screening Programmes can be accessed through these links: