There are potential complications from an amniocentesis, i.e., preterm labor, spontaneous rupture of membranes, fetal or placental injury; and the clinician performing the procedure should explain what these are prior to the procedure.
It assists with dating the pregnancy, determining the number of fetuses, detecting fetal anomalies, following the growth and development of each fetus, and serves to monitor the length of the cervix in anticipation of preterm labor.
For an extremely preterm fetus, a normal NST is reported as being reactive for gestational age, which indicates the FHR demonstrated two accelerations of 10 beats per minute above baseline for 10 seconds over a 20-30 minute period.
Final birth data for 2002 made it apparent that two key predictors of infant health, the percentage of infants born preterm (less than 37 weeks gestation) and low birth weight (less than 2,500 grams) rose during this time frame.
This often means more frequent visits to the healthcare provider, serial ultrasounds to make sure that the babies are growing satisfactorily, amniocentesis to check for lung development, and close monitoring for preterm labor.