Reproductive decisions after neonatal screening identifies cystic fibrosis

Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed. 2000 Mar;82(2):F124-7. doi: 10.1136/fn.82.2.f124.


Aims: To document the reproductive choices made by women in New South Wales, Australia, after neonatal screening has identified cystic fibrosis (CF).

Methods: A sample of women attending cystic fibrosis clinics in New South Wales who had a child (or children) diagnosed by neonatal screening between 1981 and 1996 were interviewed.

Results: Two thirds of the women chose to avoid having another child with CF. The uptake of prenatal diagnosis was 66% in women who had a subsequent pregnancy; of these 69% terminated or would have terminated an affected fetus. Fifty nine per cent of the women who decided against a further pregnancy made this decision in order to avoid having another child with CF.

Conclusions: These data show that having a child with CF influenced subsequent reproductive choices. In addition to the medical advantages of an early diagnosis offered by neonatal screening, this also allows informed future reproductive decisions.

MeSH terms

  • Cystic Fibrosis / diagnosis
  • Cystic Fibrosis / psychology*
  • Data Collection
  • Decision Making*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Mothers / psychology*
  • Neonatal Screening / psychology*
  • New South Wales
  • Pregnancy
  • Sexual Behavior / psychology*