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NIPT: Genetic counselling

As London’s leading NIPT provider, we’re here to compassionately guide you through choosing the right Non-Invasive Prenatal Test. 

Our team of expert genetic counsellors offers personalised support and clear explanations of your genetic test results, ensuring you feel understood and supported every step of the way.

Supporting Your Journey to NIPT Decision

Choosing the right Non-Invasive Prenatal Test (NIPT) for you and your baby is a deeply personal decision. With the multitude of tests available, each offering insights into your baby’s genetic health, it’s understandable to feel both overwhelmed and concerned about making the best choice. This is why we’ve introduced our pre-NIPT genetic counselling service

Our compassionate, certified genetic counsellors are dedicated to walking you through your options in a supportive, understanding environment. We’re here to provide the information and emotional support you need, ensuring you make a decision that feels right for you and your growing family.

Abstract Prenatal Care Illustration for London Pregnancy Clinic blog - A minimalist design with a soft palette of light orange and baby pink, featuring an abstract fetus surrounded by prenatal care symbols such as a stethoscope and heart, conveying a sense of protection, growth, and tranquility for expectant mothers.

In our clinic, ultrasound and genetics are working together to provide the best possible care for your baby

Genetic Services for your pregnancy

  • SMART Test: A detailed overview of the world’s most sophisticated fetal health screening panel – genetic counselling is included in SMART Test package

  • Certified clinical genetic counsellors experienced in prenatal genetics

  • Assistance in selecting the Best NIPT for Your Pregnancy

  • Expanded Genetic Screening Panels explanation and advice

  • Pros and cons of the most comprehensive and advanced NIPT options

  • NIPT for microdeletions, single-gene syndromes and specific genetic conditions

  • High chance NHS Combined Screening Test results: Guidance and support

  • High probability NIPT results by other providers: Genetic counselling

  • Discounted price for NIPT-related Genetic Counselling – just £75

  • Same-day, evening, and weekend phone and video-call appointments

  • 5* rated service on Google, Trustpilot & Doctify

Genetic Counselling Explained

Who is a genetic counsellor?

A genetic counsellor specialising in pregnancy and fertility is a healthcare professional trained in genetics and counselling. They focus on assisting individuals and couples during preconception, pregnancy, and the postnatal period. They help assess the risk of inherited conditions, interpret results from prenatal screenings like NIPT, and advise on genetic testing options.

These counsellors, working together with fetal medicine specialists, provide crucial support in navigating the complex landscape of genetic information, helping families to understand their options for family planning, prenatal screening, and managing potential genetic risks to ensure the best possible outcomes for both parents and their future children.

What does genetic counseling involve?

Genetic counselling before and during pregnancy helps expectant parents understand how genes might affect their baby’s health. This includes:

  • Looking at family and health history to figure out if there’s a chance the baby might inherit certain health issues.
  • Teaching about how genetic conditions are passed on, what tests can be done, how to deal with or prevent these conditions, and where to find more help or information.
  • Offering advice to help parents make choices about genetic testing and how to prepare for any health risks the baby might face.

This service aims to give parents the information they need in a simple way, helping them feel ready and supported as they plan for their baby’s future.

NIPT genetic counselling at London Pregnancy Clinic

Genetic counselling is like having a detailed chat with a specialist who helps you understand how your family’s health history might affect your or your baby’s health. Here’s a simple look at how it works:

  • Sharing Stories: You start by talking about your family’s health history. This helps the counsellor determine if there are any health patterns you should be aware of.
  • Learning Together: The counsellor will explain how genes work and talk about conditions that could be inherited. For example, they might discuss Non-Invasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT), a blood test you can take during pregnancy to see if your baby is at risk for conditions like Down syndrome, or carrier screening tests, which can tell if you or your partner carry genes for conditions like cystic fibrosis (CF).
  • Talking About Tests: If there are tests that might help, the counsellor will tell you about them, how they work, and what the results could mean. This part is all about giving you the info you need to decide if you want to take any tests.
  • Supporting You: It’s a safe space to talk about how you feel and any worries you might have. The counselor is there to listen and help you through it.
  • Making Decisions: The counsellor helps you consider the pros and cons of testing based on what’s important to you. They’re there to support you, not to tell you what to do.
  • Help Along the Way: The chat doesn’t stop after you decide about testing. The counsellor will be there to explain test results, discuss what comes next, and point you toward more help if you need it.

In this journey, you’re not alone. Genetic counselling is about getting personalized guidance to navigate the genetic aspects of pregnancy and fertility, ensuring you make the most informed decisions for yourself and your future family.

Diving into NIPT options
At London Pregnancy Clinic, we take pride in being a leading provider of NIPT in the UK. We’ve put a lot of care into picking the very best NIPT options out there, looking closely at different companies, labs, and what their tests can do. Our goal? To bring you a selection of advanced tests that cover the broadest range of genetic conditions currently identifiable by today’s NIPT technology.

We’re excited to offer you PrenatalSafe, GeneSafe, Panorama AI, and Unity NIPTs. Plus, we’ve created something special – our very own SMART Test. It combines an advanced scan with NIPT, setting a new standard for checking your baby’s health as thoroughly as possible.

We get that all these options might feel overwhelming, which is why we’re here to help make things clearer and simpler for you. To help you navigate these choices, we offer discounted genetic counselling for anyone thinking about genetic testing. It’s all part of ensuring you feel informed, supported, and confident in your decisions about your baby’s health.

SMART Test: Power of ultrasound and genetics
If you choose our signature SMART Test, we’ll include genetic counselling for free.

We’re convinced that having a chat with a genetic counsellor is key. It helps you get the full picture of what the SMART Test offers and weigh up its benefits against any considerations. This way, you can make a choice that feels just right for you.

The SMART Test, short for ‘Structural, Chromosomal, and Monogenic Anomalies Recognition Two-step Test,’ is our unique approach to prenatal care. Let’s break it down into simpler steps:

  • First Step (10-week scan and advanced NIPT panel): Around 10 weeks into your pregnancy, we perform an expert 10 Week Scan to get an early look at how your baby is developing. If the scan is normal, we start with the most advanced NIPT available to check your baby’s genetic health. 

  • Second Step (Early Fetal Scan and Echocardiography at 13-16 weeks): Between 13 and 16 weeks, we do a detailed scan of your baby’s body and heart. This helps us spot any structural issues or heart problems early on.

The SMART Test combines these two steps to give you a comprehensive overview of your baby’s health. It combines checking the baby’s physical development through scans with a deep dive into their genetic makeup. This way, you get all the critical info you need about your baby’s well-being early in your pregnancy, supporting you in making informed decisions.

NIPT: what questions to ask our geneticist?

Here’s a comprehensive list of questions you might consider asking our geneticist about NIPT:

  1. What does NIPT screen for? Ask about the range of conditions, including common chromosomal abnormalities, single-gene disorders, sex chromosome issues, microdeletions, and more.

  2. How accurate is NIPT? Inquire about the test’s reliability for detecting different conditions.

  3. What will the results tell us? Understand what you can learn from the outcomes and their implications.

  4. What happens if the test results are positive or unclear? Discuss follow-up steps and options for further testing.

  5. Are there any risks associated with NIPT? While non-invasive, it’s good to know every detail.

  6. How does NIPT compare to other prenatal tests? Gain insight into why NIPT might be recommended and how it fits with other screening or diagnostic tests.

  7. When and how will we receive the results? Timing can be crucial for your peace of mind and planning.

  8. What are the costs, and can the NHS perform NIPT in your case? Financial planning is an important aspect to consider.

  9. Considering our family health history, how relevant is NIPT for us? Get personalized advice based on your specific situation.

  10. Can NIPT provide information about the baby’s sex or other genetic traits like blood group? Some tests offer these details for those interested.

  11. What do extended NIPT panels cover? Dive into the specifics of tests for a broad range of genetic conditions.

  12. How do different NIPT brands and providers compare? Each may offer unique tests or have different strengths.

  13. What are the pros and cons of various NIPT options? Discuss the benefits and limitations to find what’s best for you.

  14. Should we also consider additional genetic tests, like carrier screening? Other tests can complement NIPT for a comprehensive view of your baby’s genetic health.

  15. What causes ‘no call’ results, and what do we do if that happens? Understand why sometimes NIPT doesn’t give a clear result and what the next steps are in that scenario.

  16. Who is eligible for NIPT, and are there cases where it’s not recommended? Discuss whether NIPT is suitable for your specific situation.

Asking these detailed questions can really help you feel prepared and informed about NIPT and any other genetic tests you’re considering during your pregnancy. It’s all about making sure you have the clarity and confidence to make the best choices for you and your little one on the way.

Discussing NIPT with a geneticist is ideal at 8-9 weeks

The best time to talk about the Non-Invasive Prenatal Test (NIPT) with our genetic counsellor is around 8-9 weeks into your pregnancy. Here’s why this timing works well:

  • You Can Decide Early: Talking early in your pregnancy gives you plenty of time to think about whether you want this test, which can be done starting at 10 weeks.
  • Get Ready for NIPT: Chatting before the test can help you understand what to expect and what the test can tell you about your baby’s health.
  • Think About Your Next Steps: It’s good to think ahead about what you’ll do with the test results, whatever they may be.
  • Learn About More Tests: It’s also a chance to hear about other tests you might consider during your pregnancy, all in one go.
  • Considering Carrier Screening: Some parents may also consider having carrier screening tests along with NIPT. These tests can help you find out if you or your partner carry genes for certain genetic conditions that could be passed to your baby.

This early chat helps make sure you’re informed and ready for whatever comes next, making your pregnancy journey a bit smoother.

High chance Combined Test results: what does it mean?

When you get a high-probability result from the NHS Combined Screening Test, it can be shocking and scary. This test looks for signs that might suggest a higher chance of certain conditions like Down syndrome in your baby. Here’s how our genetic counsellors can help you through it:

  1. Making It Clear: They’ll explain what your results actually mean in a simple way. Remember, these results don’t mean your baby definitely has a condition, just that we need to look a bit closer.

  2. What’s Next: Our counsellors can tell you about more detailed tests you can choose to have next, like a more specific blood test (NIPT) or tests that look directly at the baby’s cells (like CVS or amniocentesis). They also might offer a second-opinion scan by an ultrasound expert.

  3. Why This Happens: They can discuss why some pregnancies show these higher chances, helping you understand that it’s not anyone’s fault.

  4. Supporting You: It’s normal to feel all sorts of emotions. Our counsellors are here to listen, support, and help you through these feelings.

  5. Figuring Out What To Do: Depending on what more tests show, they can help you think about what comes next, whether getting ready for a baby with special needs or understanding your choices.

  6. Finding More Help: They can point you to groups and experts offering more support and information.

  7. Making Decisions: They’ll help you think through your choices about further testing or care, making sure you have all the info you need.

Our genetic counsellors are here to guide you through understanding your test results, what they might mean, and how you can handle everything. They’re a friendly ear and a helping hand all the way.

High probability NIPT results: Counselling

When your NIPT shows a high chance of a genetic condition, our geneticist can help you understand and decide what to do next in a simple way:

  1. Explaining Your Results: They’ll break down what the results mean, clarifying that “high chance” doesn’t mean certain, just that there’s a higher risk.

  2. Sharing Info on the Condition: You’ll learn about the condition flagged by NIPT, like how it might affect your baby and what to expect, all explained in easy-to-understand language.

  3. Talking About Next Steps: They’ll tell you about more detailed tests you can do, like CVS or amniocentesis, to get clearer answers and help you think through whether you want these tests.

  4. Second-Opinion Scan option explanation: Getting a detailed ultrasound from an expert can spot signs of the condition, like heart problems, which can give you even more information. This second-opinion scan can be a big help in understanding what’s going on and making decisions.

  5. Offering Personal Support: Every family is different, and our geneticist will listen to you, answer your questions, and offer support based on your needs.

  6. Helping Plan Ahead: They can guide you on what comes next, whether that’s planning for your baby’s care or thinking about your next steps in family planning.

  7. Finding More Help: You’ll be directed to support groups, specialists, and information that can help you feel less alone and more informed.

  8. Supporting Your Feelings: They’re here not just with facts but also to support you emotionally through this tough time.

Our geneticist is here to ensure that you have all the information and support you need to make the best choices for your family, clearly and understandably.

Before Pregnancy: preconception genetic tests

Preconceptional genetic counselling is like getting a roadmap for your future family’s health before you start the journey. Here’s why it’s helpful:

  • Knowing About Family Health Risks: It’s a chance to examine the health histories of both partners’ families. This helps determine whether there’s a risk of passing certain health issues to your baby.

  • De Novo Mutations: Sometimes, health issues that weren’t in the family can appear for the first time. While not everything is predictable or preventable, knowing about these can help you make choices about your pregnancy.

  • Reducing Risks: You’ll learn if there are ways to lower the chances of having a baby with genetic issues. Not all conditions can be avoided, but being informed helps you plan better.

  • Carrier Screening Tests: These tests check if you or your partner carry genes for conditions like cystic fibrosis without having the condition yourselves. Knowing this helps you understand if your baby could inherit these conditions and what options you have to avoid passing them on.

  • Exploring NIPT Options: Besides carrier screening, you can learn about Non-Invasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT) options available during pregnancy. NIPT can screen for genetic conditions like Down syndrome early on, offering peace of mind and more information for decision-making.

In simple terms, this counselling gives you important insights and advice about having a healthy baby, including what tests might be helpful before you get pregnant and early in the pregnancy.

Harmony NIPT Scan

10 Weeks Scan & NIPT

The best selection of advanced NIPT and ultrasound packages in London

basic

PrenatalSAFE

BASIC
Prenatal SAFE
extended

Panorama AI

EXTENDED
Panorama AI
Most advanced NIPT

Smart Test®

COMPREHENSIVE
Smart TEST®
As early as…
  • 10 weeks

  • 9 weeks

  • 10 weeks

Turnaround (Working Days)
  • 2-4

  • 5-7

  • 7-22

Lab Location
  • UK

  • US

  • UK+EU

No Call Results
  • 0.5%

  • 1%

  • 0.5%

Redraw Rate
  • 2%

  • 3%

  • 2%

Down, Edwards, & Patau Syndrome
Di George Syndrome (22q del)
Triploidy
Turner Syndrome (45X)
  • *

Sex chromosomes aneuploidies
All chromosomes
Chromosomal deletions & duplications
Microdeletions
  • 5 (+£200)

  • 9

Inherited monogenic disorders 
Important Genetic syndromes
Comprehensive anomaly Ultrasound screening
Fetal echocardiography
Fetal sex reveal (optional)
Scan & NIPT price
  • £540

  • £590

  •  from £1690 **

  • £790 for Microdeletions

  • **introduction offer

Comprehensive NIPT
Weeks 20-25

Smart Test

SMART TEST represents the unique and most advanced option of expert scan and extended NIPT package available. SMART TEST screens for:

  • 22 chromosomal anomalies (including Down’s syndrome)
  • 9 clinically significant NIPT microdeletions (including microdeletion DiGeorge syndrome)
  • 44 different genetic diseases (including Noonan syndrome)
  • 5 inherited single-gene disorders (including cystic fibrosis genetic testing)
  • Sex chromosome anomalies (including NIPT test for Turner syndrome)
  • Majority of severe structural anomalies (including spina bifida)
  • Majority of severe heart defects (including transposition of great arteries)

Read more…

Best overall NIPT
Weeks 6-9

prenatalsafe

PrenatalSafe uses advanced genomics technology and a unique test algorithm. This NIPT offers secure performance when conducting a Down syndrome pregnancy test. In addition to Down’s (trisomy 21), this is a specialist test for Edwards (trisomy 18), and Patau (trisomy 13) syndromes, with the option to determine fetal sex.

Currently, we consider PrenatalSAFE as the best option for NIPT in London, because it is convenient, requires only one blood tube, and offers quick, reliable results with a very low no-call rate (0.5%).

Read more…

Extended NIPT
Week 10 & 11

Panorama AI

Panorama NIPT is a globally renowned advanced NIPT with a strong reputation for Down’s syndrome screening. Its standout feature is the validated capability to screen for Di George syndrome (22q11 microdeletion syndrome or 22q del), a chromosomal disorder impacting heart development and potentially causing intellectual disability, behavioural issues, and other abnormalities. This syndrome, affecting 1 in 2000 babies, is the second most common chromosomal condition after Down’s syndrome. 

Panorama AI however has a long turnaround time of up to 2 weeks due to international shipping to US-based lab.

Read more…

Carrier Screen NIPT
Weeks 12 – 16

UNITY

UNITY Aneuploidy Screen is a new player in the NIPT market, and it offers very competitive pricing, making it the best cost-effective option for secure screening of Down’s syndrome and other common chromosomal abnormalities.

For expectant mothers with Rh negative blood group, UNITY Rh is particularly valuable as it can identify the fetal Rh blood group.

UNITY Carrier Screen stands out among other NIPTs as it can screen for a range of severe genetic disorders, including cystic fibrosis (CF), spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), sickle cell disease, and other fetal red cell genetic disorders.

Read more…

Frequently Asked Questions

Your questions answered

Understanding the statistics behind NIPT

We really want to make sure you understand some terms we use when talking about screening tests:

  • Detection Rate: This tells us how well the test finds the condition it’s testing for among those who actually have it. Think of it as the test’s ability to correctly identify patients with the disease.

  • Positive Predictive Value (PPV): This is about how many of the positive test results are true positives. For instance, if NIPT says there’s a 90% PPV for Down’s Syndrome, it means that in 90 out of 100 times it suggests ‘High Probability,’ the condition really is present. But it also means there’s a 10% chance of a ‘false positive’—where the test says ‘High Probability,’ but the condition isn’t actually there.

When we get a ‘High Probability’ result from a test, we always suggest following up with a diagnostic test, like CVS or amniocentesis, to make sure of the results.

We know there’s been some confusion about NIPT in the past. We’ve got a blog post that breaks down the stats in an easy-to-get way. And remember, if you’re ever unsure about anything or have more questions, our team is just an email or phone call away, ready to help you out.

If you would like to find out more, click here.

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