Frequently Asked Questions
In order to make our patients feel at ease, CRIFM provides answers to their questions and concerns.
Questions and Answers about the fetus
Ｑ.In how many months of pregnancy should I have a fetal diagnosis for CRIFM?
A. The fetal diagnosis is divided into three stages: early, mid and late. 11-13 weeks of pregnancy is the period of early fetal diagnosis, 18-21 weeks of pregnancy is the period of mid-term fetal diagnosis, and 29-30 weeks of pregnancy is the period of late fetal diagnosis. However, fetal diagnosis is possible for those who miss the above periods, so please do not hesitate to contact us.
After the early fetal diagnosis, the CVS can be done on the same day. After the early fetal diagnosis, you can have the CVS on the same day, and after the mid-term fetal diagnosis, you can have the amniocentesis test on the same day. In the period between the early and mid-term fetal diagnosis, a follow-up scan can be done to continue to examine the baby. (Follow-up scans are different from fetal diagnosis in that they mainly focus on abnormal areas and development.
Ｑ.What is the difference between an ultrasound examination during a prenatal checkup and a fetal diagnosis at CRIFM?
A. They are completely different.
The ultrasound examination in antenatal care varies depending on the facility and doctor, but in a normal antenatal care examination, the fetal weight and the amount of amniotic fluid are checked to see if there is any risk of miscarriage or premature birth.
The fetal diagnosis at CRIFM uses the latest ultrasound equipment (all six ultrasound machines are constantly upgraded to the latest version of the year), which is much more advanced than the equipment used for general prenatal checkups, to closely observe the changing morphology of the fetus as it grows. Dr. Pooh’s fetal neurosurgery (fetal brain dock), established through her years of experience, is incorporated into both mid-term fetal diagnosis and late stage fetal diagnosis. There is no such facility in the world. Therefore, it is a very precise examination that cannot be compared to a prenatal checkup.
The fetal diagnosis of CRIFM is not a screening test, but rather a test that is closer to a definitive diagnosis, and it is completely different in that it can be supported by genetic testing.
Ｑ.What kind of test results does the CRIFM fetal diagnosis give?
A. In the early stages of pregnancy (11-13 weeks), the fetal diagnosis will check for swelling in the baby, development of the nasal bone and jaw, position of the ears, early structure of the brain, position and orientation of the stomach and heart, and abnormalities in the blood flow in the umbilical cord. In particular, the heart is checked in great detail for tricuspid valve regurgitation.
In the middle and late stages of fetal diagnosis, the baby’s structure is checked for as many as 30 items, so the examination is much more detailed than the ultrasound examination during the prenatal checkup. For more details, please see the detailed information on fetal diagnosis.
Ｑ.How much does the CRIFM fetal diagnosis cost? Is it covered by insurance?
A. No, fetal diagnosis is not covered by health insurance. In the case of twins and triplets, there is a fee for each baby.
The fetal diagnosis can be divided into early, mid and late stages, and the basic fee for all of them is 41,800 yen (tax included). For those who have undergone the mid-term fetal diagnosis, the basic fee for the late-term fetal diagnosis is 22,000 yen (tax included). In addition, if it is judged that detailed observation is necessary, a fee of 5,500 yen to 44,000 yen (including tax) will be charged for a detailed examination, and a fee of 3,850 yen to 22,000 yen (including tax) will be charged for explanation of diagnostic imaging results and counseling.
Ｑ.I was told that my fetus may have a congenital disease. What should I do?
A. Even if you are told that your fetus is suspected of having a congenital disease after a prenatal checkup, it does not mean that the diagnosis has been confirmed.
CRIFM does not provide second opinions on imaging test results from other hospitals, so when you consult us, we will guide you again from CRIFM’s fetal dock.
There have been cases where patients have come to CRIFM suspecting a congenital disease and found no disease at all. After a thorough fetal dock and other examinations, we will tell you whether you really have a congenital disease or not, and if so, what the condition is.
Ｑ.I took NIPT at an unlicensed facility and it was negative.
A. Yes, of course.
NIPT can only detect some chromosomal abnormalities such as Down syndrome. Some unlicensed facilities will also do NIPT for microchromosomal abnormalities, but NIPT has its limitations and does not detect all abnormalities.
CRIFM’s ultrasound fetal diagnosis is a genetic screening test for chromosomal abnormalities and a morphological diagnosis for congenital malformations.
Strictly speaking, ultrasonography is not only a screening test but also a diagnostic test, so it is highly recommended to have it. There are many people who came to CRIFM after testing negative for NIPT and ended up having a CVS or amniocentesis test, resulting in the chromosomal / gene abnormality. I think it would be more reasonable and economical to have a fetal dock at CRIFM and then decide whether to have NIPT or CVS.
Ｑ.Can you take care of me until delivery?
A. CRIFM does not handle deliveries. However, if you consult with us, we will refer you to the most suitable delivery facility possible, depending on your address, wishes, and the condition of your baby.
Also, if you have a fetal brain disease and need a follow-up scan of the brain until close to delivery, we can of course refer you to the delivery facility where the good pediatric neurologists or neurosurgeons exist. We also provide various consultations after birth.
Ｑ.Can you tell me the sex of the baby?
A. We can tell you the sex of your baby if you wish after 20 weeks of pregnancy, after diagnosing the external and internal genitalia. However, we cannot tell you the gender based on the results of CVS or amniocentesis test alone.
Ｑ.Do I need a letter of introduction for the consultation?
A. Yes, a letter of introduction is required in order to share your medical information with your current doctor. Over 95% of the patients who come to CRIFM bring a letter of referral. We receive many referrals from universities and national centers, so there is a smooth link between CRIFM, your doctor, and higher-order facilities.
If you do not have a referral letter, there is a fee of 5,500 yen (including tax) in addition to the initial consultation fee.
Ｑ.How long is it possible to cancel an appointment?
A. You can cancel your appointment even on the day of your appointment. However, CRIFM is very busy and it is difficult to make appointments, so if you cancel the day before or the day of your appointment, we will not be able to make appointments for other patients. And it may be difficult for you to change your appointment.
We ask that you contact us at least three days in advance if possible.
Ｑ.It is difficult for me to go to CRIFM for a fetal diagnosis on a day trip because I live far away.
A. Please let us know in advance that you are far away and that you would like to return home by the end of the day. We will do our best to complete the examination and take you home by the end of the day.
However, it is not recommended for pregnant women to travel a long distance to and from the hospital in one day, considering the burden on the pregnant woman’s body. It is better to stay overnight the day before. On the day of the examination, it is recommended that you stay overnight and take it easy.