A Tufts doc on experience and screening for high-risk pregnancies

First, note that the Health Wonk Review, currently hosted by BHN, is Politico’s Blog of the Day. 

preggersOn today’s Wall Street Journal op/ed page, Dr. Adam Wolfberg, a Tufts fellow in maternal-fetal medicine, wonders how docs can improve their skills for procedures they rarely perform. He talks about sending patients out for chorionic villus sampling, a test for Down Syndrome that can be done earlier in a pregnancy than amniocentesis.  

 I sent my patient to another physician instead of doing the test myself because my colleague had performed the procedure hundreds of times. I had done only a handful of CVS procedures, and there is indirect evidence that the procedure is more likely to cause a miscarriage when it is performed by a less-experienced doctor.

 As he describes it: “The doctor places a needle into a pea-sized target three inches below the skin using a grainy ultrasound image as a guide. “  Don’t remind me. I was 39 when I had my son.  When the doc came at me with that giant needle, he said “I think you interviewed me for a story once.”

Gulp.

All turned out well

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