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New research suggests that a blood test may one day be able to tell expectant mothers the gender of their baby as early as the first trimester.
Such a test would be the first of its kind, according to the South Korean researchers.
They collected blood samples from more than 200 women in the first trimester of pregnancy and concluded that various ratios of two enzymes called DYS14 and GAPDH in a pregnant woman's blood indicate if a baby will be a girl or a boy.
The study appears in the January issue of the FASEB Journal, published by the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology.
"Generally, early fetal gender determination has been performed by invasive procedures such as chorionic villus sampling or amniocentesis," said Dr. Hyun Mee Ryu, from the department of obstetrics and gynecology at Cheil General Hospital and Women's Healthcare Center at the KwanDong University School of Medicine in Seoul. "However, these invasive procedures still carry a one to two percent risk of miscarriage and cannot be performed until 11 weeks of gestation. Moreover, reliable determination of fetal gender using ultrasonography cannot be performed in the first trimester, because the development of external genitalia is not complete," the researcher added in a journal news release.
"Therefore, this can reduce the need for invasive procedures in pregnant women carrying an X-linked chromosomal abnormality and clarify inconclusive readings by ultrasound," the researcher explained.
More research is needed before such tests are widely available, the researchers said. But, "this paper does show it is possible to predict the sex of a child as early as the first few weeks after conception," Dr. Gerald Weissmann, editor-in-chief of The FASEB Journal, said in the news release.
"At present, parents are sometimes given the wrong information about the sex of their unborn child; this test should prove helpful in resolving any uncertainties of today's ultrasound observations," he added.
Would you have a blood test to determine the gender of your baby in the first trimester if possible? How early would you want to find out what you are having?
I would love to find out as early as possible. Because we did IVF, I could have paid the big bucks to find out the gender before they even put them into me. But, we weren't willing to spend the $2500 to do that. It wasn't that important to us.
I am afraid people would use this to abort if it isn't the gender they wanted. I think it could be a bad idea.
My future SIL was telling me about this at Christmas. My thoughts are honestly if people are crazy/stupid enough to choose to abort solely due to gender; they would probably make that decision later on as well. I would totally get the blood test, just because it is less invasive than an ultrasound. And I think it would help all the first trimester blahs to be able to know immediately what you're having and start bonding even earlier.I know I really got hit with the connection to this pregnancy when we found out it is a girl and could really start imagining who she is going to be.
I didn't think about that! But I totally get what you are saying. My thought was with miscarriages. I haven't miscarried before, but wondered how the mothers that have would feel if they knew what they were having before they miscarried.
I do agree with feeling I have connected with our little fella since knowing what he is and starting to shop for items for him. I'd probably elect for the blood test. Esp since the ultrasounds can be second guessed.
I think it's great for those women who carry a gender linked genetic disorder (for example any male child will have XYZ and be non viable. I think for those women it would be great to know early on, so you can make a decision on what to do.
Also women who will abort a healthy fetus based on gender will do it at a later stage too. Even if doctors refuse to do gender u/s, you will see so-called underground clinics open up that will do them (India is a prime example of this).
For the rest of us who just want to know, because we are curious- I think it would be a great option!
I would have loved to know as soon as possible. Maybe it would have alleviated some of my stress after I convinced myself it was a boy, lol.
As far as miscarriage goes.... I know a lot of people who either requested blood tests on the baby after a miscarriage to tell them if it was a boy or girl, or spent a long time wondering. For some people maybe it's easier to not know, but the majority I see really want something to hold on to. I know I would have wanted to know.