Ethnic and socio-economic differences in uptake of prenatal diagnostic tests for Down's syndrome

Mirjam Fransen, Hajo Wildschut, Johan Mackenbach, Eric Steegers, Robert-Jan Galjaard, Marie-louise Bot

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Abstract

Objective: The objective of this study was to assess ethnic and socio-economic differences in the uptake of maternal age-based prenatal diagnostic testing for Down's syndrome by amniocentesis or chorionic villus sampling. Study design: The study population consisted of 12,340 women aged 36 years or over, who lived in a geographically defined region in the Southwest of The Netherlands and who gave birth to a live born infant in the period 2000-2004. Data were obtained from the Department of Clinical Genetics Erasmus MC and Statistics Netherlands. Logistic regression analyses were done to assess ethnic and socioeconomic differences in uptake. Results: The overall uptake of prenatal diagnostic tests was 28.5%. Women of Turkish and Caribbean origin participated in prenatal diagnostic tests equally or more often than Dutch women. Women of North-African origin and women from low socio-economic background had a lower uptake than others. Ethnic differences in uptake could not be attributed to differences in socio-economic background. Conclusions: Uptake of prenatal diagnostic tests for Down's syndrome in The Netherlands was low and varied among ethnic and socio-economic groups of advanced maternal age. The finding that women of Turkish and Caribbean origin participated in prenatal diagnostic tests equally or more often than Dutch women was unexpected. The low uptake among Dutch women may be related to the Dutch pregnancy culture. The finding that women of North-African origin and women from low socio-economic background had a lower uptake may be related to barriers in access to prenatal diagnostic tests. (C) 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)158-162
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Journal of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biology
Volume151
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2010

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