Fetal Medicine Unit

The Fetal Medicine Unit offers
the full range of consultations and tests 
to screen for fetal diseases, infections,
chromosomal abnormalities
and malformations.


What We Do

Prenatal diagnosis, ultrasound, consultations

The Team

Specialist gynecologists, fetal sonographers, geneticist, psychologist

1st Trimester Prenatal Diagnosis

Diagnostics & Testing

Latest-generation equipment and laboratories on site

One Day Test

Fetal DNA

Analysis of fetal DNA in the maternal blood

Patient care

Expertise, personalized support


French and American quality and safety standards


Required documents

What We Do

The Fetal Medicine Unit screens for the following anomalies:

  • Trisomy 21 and other chromosomal abnormalities
  • The main fetal malformations
  • Maternal to fetal infections: toxoplasmosis, cytomegalovirus, chicken pox, parvovirus

Screening for these anomalies can be performed during the 1st and 2nd trimester fetal check-up, and results are generally available within 24 hours. 

We also offer genetic consultations.

The aim of these consultations is to screen for parental risk factors such as hemophilia, cystic fibrosis, fragile X syndrome and a host of other disorders for which one or more genes have been identified. 

The Unit can also perform:

  • All prenatal diagnosis exams:

     - specialized fetal ultrasound and echocardiogram
     - specialized biological testing
     - amniocentesis
     - prenatal testing for the main trisomies in the maternal blood (non-invasive analysis of fetal DNA in the maternal blood)
     - CVS (chorionic villus sampling)      
     - fetal blood sampling  

  • Testing for and evaluation of infectious risks (toxoplasmosis, cytomegalovirus)
  • Evaluation and prevention of the risks of premature delivery (diabetes, genetic disease transmission)

The Team

Medical coordinator: Doctor François JACQUEMARD

1st Trimester Prenatal Diagnosis

This combined test assesses the risk of Trisomy 21 (Down syndrome) in the 1st trimester of pregnancy.

It includes:

  • Maternal blood test to evaluate 1st trimester free β-HCG and PAPP-A levels
  • Fetal morphology ultrasound: measurement of nuchal translucency and analysis of other markers indicating a risk of chromosomal abnormality / early screening for the main malformations identifiable at this stage
  • Prenatal advisory consultation to explain and discuss the results of the combined test

If fetal sampling (chorionic villus sampling) is advised:

  • It will be performed the same day or the next day
  • Initial results are available within 24 hours

The 1st trimester prenatal diagnosis can be performed in a half-day. 

Diagnostics & Testing

  • Specialized obstetrical ultrasound unit (state-of-the-art sonographic scanner producing two- and three-dimensional high definition images)
  • Clinical laboratory operating 24/7

One Day Test

All exams and consultations (blood test, ultrasound and consultation with a specialist) can be performed in one half-day.
Download our One Day Test brochure 

NIPT, or cfDNA

NIPT (Non-Invasive Prenatal Testing for trisomies 13, 18 and 21) is also known as cell-free DNA screening (for trisomies 13, 18 and 21 through cell-free DNA analysis).

What is non-invasive prenatal screening by fetal DNA analysis?

NIPT is a rapid, reliable and zero-risk genetic test that screens for the main trisomies (21,13 and 18) that may occur during pregnancy, using a simple maternal blood sample.

This screening method poses no risk for your pregnancy, unlike invasive exams such as chorionic villus sampling or amniocentesis, which have an associated risk – albeit very low at 0.1 to 0.2 percent – of miscarriage.

Starting from the 11th week of pregnancy, for high-risk populatins, NIPT can detect chromosomal disorders with a sensitivity rate greater than 99 percent.

It is therefore not a diagnostic test but a highly sensitive screening test.

Our Fetal Medicine Unit began offering NIPT in January 2013, and has performed more than 10,000 tests to date.

This test screens for abnormalities in chromosomes 21, 13 and 18 with a sensitivity rate greater than 99 percent, even in populations with an intermediate or low risk.

The results are given as follows:

  • Negative result (or normal): this result is reassuring, as it is very unlikely that trisomy 21 is present. However, a low residual risk remains (less than 0.01 percent) and monitoring should continue throughout the pregnancy.
  • Positive result (high probability of trisomy 21, 13 and 18): this result must be confirmed with an invasive fetal karyotype test (amniocentesis).

Who should undergo NIPT?

The typical indication for this test is when combined first semester screening (known as the One Day Test) for trisomy 21 shows an intermediate risk, between 1/51 and 1/1000. 

As of January 17, 2019, NIPT is covered for this particular indication by Assurance Maladie, the French national health insurance.

NIPT may also be indicated in other circumstances following a genetic counseling consultation, especially if the patient has personal or family antecedents.

The main contraindications are the presence of a fetal morphological anomaly and/or high nuchal translucency detected in the first trimester of pregnancy via ultrasound.

In most cases, before undergoing cell-free DNA analysis prenatal screening, the patient must meet with a prenatal diagnosis specialist.

During this consultation, the patient’s personal and family history will be assessed and the risks of fetal abnormality will be discussed using the first trimester ultrasound results as well as the maternal serum marker measurements (free β-HCG and PAPP-A).

Practical information

Please be sure to bring the following documents to your appointment:

  • 1st trimester ultrasound reports and images
  • Results from the blood test used to measure pregnancy hormones

Patient Care

The Fetal Medicine Unit aims to help couples in the analysis, decision-making and monitoring of pregnancy when a fetal malformation or abnormality is detected or suspected or when prenatal diagnosis is being considered due to a family history of genetically transmitted disease.

A Unit combining expertise and personalized support

  • The Unit’s internationally renowned doctors are specialized in prenatal diagnosis and fetal medicine.
  • Prenatal advisory consultations and genetic consultations give you the opportunity to meet and speak with our specialists. They will advise you throughout the process so that, together, you may find the solution that suits your needs.
  • The team is English-speaking. Multilingual interpreters (in particular Chinese and Japanese) are also available to assist you.


The Unit is one of 49 centers in France to be certified by the French Agence de la Biomédecine.

The quality and safety of the care we provide undergo a dual evaluation process ensuring our continuous compliance with the highest safety and treatment efficacy standards:

  • Certification by the French Haute Autorité de Santé (HAS) every four years
  • Accreditation by the Joint Commission, the American organization that accredits hospitals in the United States, every three years

Our specialists use the latest technologies available for prenatal diagnosis:

  • Two state-of-the-art sonographic scanners producing two- and three-dimensional high definition images
  • Rooms dedicated to fetal sampling
  • Specific biological testing
  • Latest-generation software
  • Cutting-edge techniques in molecular biology and molecular cytogenetics


Schedule an appointment with the Fetal Medicine Unit:

  • By phone: 01 46 41 28 82
  • By email

Coming to the American Hospital of Paris for a consultation or medical exam? 

What you should bring :

For your information : One Day Test Fee information


Contact Information

Fetal Medicine Unit

Aile D - Niveau 1

Telephone : + 33 (0)1 46 41 28 82

Prior to arrival

Make sure you bring your personal ID and your carte vitale if you are covered by French social security (Assurance Maladie)

Find out more

American Hospital of Paris - 63, Bd Victor Hugo 92200 Neuilly-sur-Seine - France - Tél : +33 (0)1 46 41 25 25


American Hospital Of Paris