Pregnant woman being shown ultrasound picture by doctor

How It Works

  • Droplet icon


    A maternal blood sample is analyzed for three biochemical markers: alpha fetoprotein (AFP), free beta human chorionic gonadotropin (free beta hCG) and pregnancy associated plasma protein-A (PAPP-A)

    Read more about the importance of biochemical markers in prenatal screening.

  • Ultrasound icon


    An ultrasound examination is needed to confirm gestational age, measure the nuchal translucency (NT), and assess the fetal nasal bone.

    Research shows that the fetal nasal bone is absent in approximately 70% of all Down syndrome cases. With the Fetal Nasal Bone Assessment option added to the First Trimester Screen | FβSM protocol, physicians can raise the detection rate and lower the false positive rate for Down syndrome.

    Need ultrasound certification? We can help.

The Advantages of Free Beta hCG:

The use of free beta hCG in screening for Down syndrome and other chromosomal abnormalities during the first trimester has been demonstrated to be more effective than other markers, including intact or total hCG. Intact/total hCG, while an effective second trimester marker, is far less effective during the first trimester. NTD Eurofins is the only laboratory that utilizes free beta hCG in their screening protocol.

The American College of Medical Genetics (ACMG) technical guidelines on prenatal screening state the following:

“Before 11 weeks, free beta hCG is discriminatory but hCG is not. Between 11 and 13 gestational weeks, free beta hCG is univariately a more discriminatory Down syndrome screening marker than hCG.”


Down syndrome

Detection Rate
False Positive

Detection Rate For Twins
False Positive For Twins

Detection Rate With Nasal Bone
False Positive With Nasal Bone

Detection Rate with Nasal Bone For Twins
False Positive With Nasal Bone For Twins

Trisomy 18/13

Detection Rate
False Positive

Detection Rate with Nasal Bone
False Positive with Nasal Bone

Test Results

Turnaround time: Results can be expected 1-2 business days from the time the sample is received at the laboratory.

More Insight Into Potential Outcomes With Screening Report Flags

Physicians can have valuable comments added to patient reports that flag the risk of other potential adverse pregnancy outcomes associated with your patients’ extremely high or low analyte levels. With these comments, you can provide your patients with a more comprehensive pregnancy risk assessment as early as 9 weeks, 0 days gestation.

Learn more about how to opt-in for prenatal report flags.

Early Detection, Early Assurance with Instant Risk Assessment from eReports

First Trimester Screen | FßSM with Instant Risk Assessment from eReports enables physicians to present a complete risk assessment for Down syndrome and Trisomy 18 (Edwards Syndrome) and Trisomy 13 (Patau syndrome) during a single office visit and ensure same-day results notification for the patient. As early as 9 weeks gestation, a maternal blood sample can be collected and submitted to NTD. The results of the blood screen are maintained and made available to the physician when the patient undergoes her nuchal ultrasound exam between 11 weeks 1 day and 13 weeks 6 days of gestation. NTD provides web-based access to your patient’s biochemistry data through a secure eReports website.

Learn more about why NTD Eurofins has been the laboratory to trust for over 30 years.

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