Yale Expert in Early Risk Assessment for Down Syndrome to Comment on FASTER Trial

Joshua Copel, M.D., a Yale School of Medicine expert in first trimester risk assessment for Down syndrome is available to comment on the First and Second Trimester Evaluation of Risk (FASTER) trial, published November 10 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

The national FASTER Trial, led by researchers at Columbia University, evaluated several new screening tests that allow for earlier detection of fetal abnormalities such as Down syndrome. The results confirm previous findings from the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences at Yale and other institutions that risk for Downs Syndrome can be assessed earlier with ultrasound using a combination of simple blood tests and measurement of a small pocket of fluid found on the back of the fetal neck.

Copel, professor of obstetrics and gynecology and pediatrics, and his colleagues at Yale’s Maternal Fetal Medicine Practice have been offering the test described in the FASTER study for two years. Copel is available to describe the technique for members of the media.

“This test is important because it allows us to give a woman her personal, individual risk of carrying a fetus with Down syndrome rather than lumping her with every other woman her age,” said Copel. “The added benefit is that we can do this early in her pregnancy.”

Patients may contact the Yale Maternal Fetal Medicine Practice at 203-785-5862 or the Yale Department of Genetics at 203-785-2661.

Copel may be reached at:
Office: 203-785-2671
Beeper: 860-340-6500
Cell: 203-887-7097
E-mail: Joshua.copel@yale.edu

Michael J. Paidas, M.D., associate professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences and director of the Thrombosis and Hemostasis in Women’s Health Program is also an expert in this area. He may be reached at:
Office: 203-737-1982
Cell: 203-671-9731
Pager: 203-370-5931
E-mail: michael.paidas@yale.edu

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Media Contact

Karen N. Peart: karen.peart@yale.edu, 203-432-1326