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Books, Journals, New Media
June 28, 2000

AmniocentesisTesting Women, Testing the Fetus: The Social Impact of Amniocentesis in America

Author Affiliations

Harriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorJonathan D.EldredgeMLS, PhD, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for new media


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JAMA. 2000;283(24):3263-3264. doi:10.1001/jama.283.24.3263-JBK0628-4-1

After ending her pregnancy in 1983 following a positive diagnosis for Down syndrome, cultural anthropologist Rayna Rapp began to study the social impact and cultural meaning of amniocentesis. For the next 15 years she studied seven constituencies intimately involved with this new reproductive technology: geneticists, genetic counselors, lab technicians, pregnant women and their supporters who used or refused the test, women who ended their pregnancies following a positive diagnosis, and parents of children with prenatally diagnosable disabilities.

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