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HealthInfo Canterbury

Testing for haemophilia before pregnancy

Testing for severe haemophilia A or B is known as pre-implantation genetic diagnosis, or PGD.

Who can have PGD?

Women who know they carry a gene for severe haemophilia and who want to avoid passing haemophilia to their sons, can ask for PGD. If the woman does not know if she is a carrier, she should ask for carrier testing. This is done by testing her blood for the haemophilia gene.

What does PGD involve?

It is essential you have genetic counselling, know precisely what will happen, and agree to it (this is called informed consent). You will also have to have some blood tests before PGD.

When the blood tests are completed, you and your partner will go through in vitro fertilisation (IVF), to produce embryos. Each embryo will then be carefully tested to see if it has the haemophilia gene. With the fertility specialist, you and your partner will decide which embryos to implant, so that you can become pregnant.

Do district health boards pay for PGD?

Yes.

PGD in Christchurch

PGD for severe haemophilia is available in Christchurch, through the co-operation of Canterbury Health Laboratories, Fertility Associates, and the Canterbury District Health Board Haematology Service.

Do I have to live in Canterbury to get access to PGD in Christchurch?

No. Funding for New Zealand residents is available from the Ministry of Health nationally. Anyone can ask for PGD in Christchurch, no matter where they live.

How do we get referred for PGD in Christchurch?

Simply ring the Haemostasis Service at Christchurch Hospital on (03) 364‑1246, or talk to your haematologist.

Written by Haematology Department, Christchurch Hospital. Adapted by HealthInfo clinical advisers. Endorsed by clinical director, Haematology, Canterbury DHB. Last reviewed June 2015.

Page reference: 25315

Review key: HITHP-25315