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  Home -> FAQs -> Prenatal Paternity Testing

Non-Invasive Prenatal Paternity Testing: Frequently Asked Questions

Paternity is an important concern for many men and women, one that is often better understood sooner rather than later. However, knowing your options regarding paternity testing, specifically non-invasive prenatal paternity testing, is not always easy. We at DNA Diagnostics Center understand this, which is why we've developed the following FAQ to help answer some of the questions you may have about our prenatal paternity testing.

  1. What is a prenatal paternity test?
  2. Why should I establish paternity?
  3. How exactly does a prenatal paternity test work?
  4. What exactly does non-invasive mean?
  5. How accurate is a non-invasive prenatal paternity test?
  6. When is the earliest that I can get a non-invasive prenatal paternity test?
  7. How safe is non-invasive prenatal paternity testing? Is there any risk to me and the baby?
  8. How long does it take to get the results of the test?
  9. Can I use the prenatal paternity test results in court?
  10. What are the fees of prenatal paternity testing?

  1. What is a prenatal paternity test?
    A prenatal paternity test is a method used to establish paternity while pregnant. Postnatal methods, such as Buccal swabs and umbilical cord testing require that a baby be born before paternity can be established. Prenatal methods, such as Aminiocentesis, Chorinoic Villus Sampling (CVS), and the non-invasive SNP microarray method can be performed as early as 9 weeks after conception.

  2. Why should I establish paternity?
    There are many reasons why someone may want to establish paternity. The basic answer is to determine the father of a child as early as possible, perhaps even before the baby is born. More complex reasons may include access to legal and social benefits, establishing accurate medical histories, and perhaps simply to strengthen the family bond, particularly between a father and child.

  3. How exactly does a prenatal paternity test work?
    There are 2 types of prenatal paternity testing: 1) an invasive method that requires fetal tissue (cells), and 2) the safest method, a non-invasive alternative, that tests fetal DNA found in the mother's blood.

    The non-invasive paternity test is the most accurate non-invasive way to determine paternity before a baby's birth. The DDC process is state-of-the-art, combining the latest in DNA SNP microarray technology and proprietary methods of preserving and analyzing the baby's DNA found naturally in the mother's bloodstream.


    The alternate method, a prenatal test with Amniocentesis or CVS, can be performed by obtaining fetal tissue (cells) through either an amniocentesis or CVS sample which is usually ordered by an OB. Once the samples are collected-collected by an OB-GYN from the amniotic fluid surrounding the developing fetus (amniocentesis) or from the placenta (CVS) plus from cheek swabs from the mother and possible father-they are sent to the laboratory for analysis. These methods produce accurate paternity results, but do present a slight risk of miscarriage.


    DDC has over 1,500 blood collection locations, making this important process as easy as possible for you.

  4. What exactly does non-invasive mean?
    Perhaps the best way to explain what is meant by non-invasive is to look at the opposite approach, what could be called an invasive paternity test. Traditional invasive paternity tests require that cells be obtained from the amniotic fluid surrounded the developing fetus or tissue from the placenta, which in some cases can cause miscarriage.

    A non-invasive paternity test, by contrast, utilizes fetal DNA isolated from the mother's blood, therefore does not require a needle to be inserted into the mother's womb.

  5. How accurate is a non-invasive prenatal paternity test?
    At DDC we provide at least a 99.9% probability of paternity in cases where paternity is confirmed (for both invasive and non-invasive tests). In fact, many studies have confirmed the effectiveness of a non-invasive prenatal paternity test.

    One such study, as reported in the New England of Medicine, tested 30 blood samples from biologic mothers and fathers (the fathers were grouped with unrelated men, for the sake of the test). In every case the researchers were able to correctly identify paternity!

  6. When is the earliest that I can get a non-invasive prenatal paternity test?
    Non-invasive testing can be done as early as 9 weeks after conception.

  7. How safe is non-invasive prenatal paternity testing? Is there any risk to me and the baby?
    For a non-invasive prenatal paternity test there is no risk to the fetus apart from the ordinary risk to the mother of having her blood drawn.

    Prior to this non-invasive test, prenatal paternity testing included invasive methods to obtain a suitable fetal sample by way of Amniocentesis or CVS (Chorionic Villus Sample). Both of these invasive methods run a slight risk of miscarriage. Unlike these invasive methods, the non-invasive test only uses the mother's blood to detect free-floating DNA from the baby.

  8. How long does it take to get the results of the test?
    You will receive results within 5 business days from the time the samples are received at the laboratory.

  9. Can I use the prenatal paternity test results in court?
    DDC does offer a legal paternity test which can be used in court cases.

    If you anticipate that your test results may potentially be used in a court case, we recommend this court-approved test.

  10. What are the fees of prenatal paternity testing?
    The Non-Invasive Prenatal Paternity Test from DDC requires a $995 down payment. We recommend that you contact DDC directly at 1-800-613-5768 to discuss your options or visit the dedicated prenatal testing page for more information.

    Our paternity experts are here to ensure you get the test that's right for you. Many other laboratories outsource customer service, but at DNA Diagnostics Center we hire and train our own experts so that your experience is confidential, friendly, and easy.

   
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