Amniotic Fluid: Alpha-Feto protein (AFP)

CPT Code(s):



Arranged for send-out for concurrently submitted prenatal cytogenetic studies only


Monday - Saturday


10 - 14 days (subject to broad range of variables)


This screening test is used to detect the presence of elevated levels of alpha-fetoprotein detected in amniotic fluid samples collected during the second trimester of pregnancy (15w0d-22w6d), which may reflect the presence of fetal open neural tube defects, such as spina bifida.

Specimen Requirements:

Amniotic Fluid: Aseptically collect 1 - 2 cc of amniotic fluid. The initial 1-2 cc collected for prenatal chromosome studies may be utilized for AchE testing.

Do not freeze or fix samples in any manner contrary to the maintenance of cell viability. Maintain sample sterility; keep all specimens at room temperature; and deliver samples to the laboratory within 24 - 48 hours. Ship specimens at room temperature for overnight delivery.

Unacceptable Conditions:

  • Frozen
  • Specimens greater than 48 hours old*
Stability (collection to initiation of testing):

  • Ambient: 24 - 48 hours*
  • Frozen: Unacceptable

* Cell viability of specimens requiring cell culture may be compromised in specimens more than 48 hours old upon receipt. Refrigeration at 2° - 8° C may assist when a delay is not preventable. Do not freeze or place specimens directly on ice.

Contact the laboratory prior to submission (approved by consultation).

Collection Procedure:


Reference Values:


Interpretation Data:



UFHPL Test #: 30015

Reported Notes: