The doctor then extracts about four teaspoons of amniotic fluid. This fluid contains fetal cells that a technician grows in a lab and analyzes. Test results are generally available in two to three weeks.
Doctors recommend you rest and avoid physical strain (such as lifting) after amniocentesis. If you experience any complications after the procedure, including abdominal cramping, leakage of fluid, vaginal bleeding, or signs of infection, call your doctor immediately.
There is between a 0.25% and 0.50% risk of miscarriage and a very slight risk of uterine infection (less than .001%) after amniocentesis. In trained hands and under ultrasound guidance, the miscarriage rate may be even lower.
In most cases, your test results will be available within two weeks. Your doctor will explain the results to you and, if a problem is diagnosed, give you information about ending the pregnancy or how best to care for your baby after birth.
Review Date 10/20/2017
Updated by: John D. Jacobson, MD, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Loma Linda University School of Medicine, Loma Linda Center for Fertility, Loma Linda, CA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.