Chorionic Villus Sampling

Your referring health professional may request Chorionic Villus Sampling (CVS), or it may be performed upon radiologist recommendation, if pre-natal screening or early obstetric ultrasound identifies a higher risk of chromosomal abnormality for your baby.

An alternative to Amniocentesis, CVS involves obtaining a sample of cells from the chorionic villus or placental tissue to be sent for pathology and chromosomal analysis. Typically performed between weeks 12 and 14 of pregnancy, CVS can be carried out earlier than amniocentesis.

This procedure does involve an element of risk and is not undertaken unless significant factors in favour of proceeding with amniocentesis are present. Your referring health professional should discuss these risk factors with you, although Dr Sivyer will also discuss these with you on the day of appointment.

CVS involves a standard transabdominal ultrasound for anatomical review and procedural planning, followed by sampling under ultrasound guidance. During the transabdominal ultrasound, warm gel is applied to your abdomen before our imaging technician places the probe on the abdominal surface and applies pressure to obtain images of the pelvic organs and foetal anatomy.

During the CVS, local anaesthetic is applied to the area to ensure you are as comfortable as possible.  Our radiologist will then insert the sampling needle using ultrasound guidance under sterile technique to obtain samples of the chorionic villus. We will be monitoring both you and your baby closely throughout the procedure.

Upon completion of the procedure, we will consult you regarding appropriate aftercare and the process of obtaining your finalised pathology results.