Screening for sickle cell and beta thalassaemia

Getting diagnostic test results

It usually takes less than a week to get the results of diagnostic tests in pregnancy. The wait for results can be a very anxious time. Some people tried not to think any further about what they might do until the results came back, but others kept turning it over in their mind. There was great relief for some people when they were told their baby did not have the condition.

Some women we spoke to had haemoglobin SC disorder themselves. This is a type of sickle cell disorder which can have similar symptoms to sickle cell anaemia, but is usually milder in its effects. (See 'Living with sickle cell disorders'). For these women it was, to some extent, a relief to learn that their baby had SC disorder rather than sickle cell anaemia, although of course they would prefer the baby to be healthy.

Some parents described the shock of discovering their child was affected and having to think what they would do next. 

You can see and hear parents talking about how they decided what to do after diagnosis.

Last reviewed December 2018.
Last updated September 2015.


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