Pinpointing couples requiring chromosome analysis

January 1, 2006

It's more than just the number of miscarriages that determines the likelihood of structural chromosome abnormalities, say researchers from the Netherlands. In couples who are trying to conceive and who have had two or more miscarriages, young maternal age at the time of a second miscarriage, a history of three or more miscarriages, and a history of two or more miscarriages in siblings or parents of either partner make the couple more likely to be carriers of such anomalies, according to the results of a nested case–control study.

It's more than just the number of miscarriages that determines the likelihood of structural chromosome abnormalities, say researchers from the Netherlands. In couples who are trying to conceive and who have had two or more miscarriages, young maternal age at the time of a second miscarriage, a history of three or more miscarriages, and a history of two or more miscarriages in siblings or parents of either partner make the couple more likely to be carriers of such anomalies, according to the results of a nested case–control study.

The study, involving 279 carrier couples and 428 non-carrier control couples, found that maternal age at second miscarriage was the most influential factor.

The authors calculated that finding an effective way to narrow the number of couples who are offered chromosome analysis could reduce the number performed by 18%, thus significantly lowering health-care costs.