Information for the public

NICE has said that the following placental growth factor (PLGF)-based tests can be offered for suspected preterm pre-eclampsia.

  • DELFIA Xpress PLGF 1‑2‑3
  • DELFIA Xpress sFlt‑1/Xpress PLGF 1‑2‑3 ratio
  • Elecsys immunoassay sFlt‑1/PLGF ratio
  • Triage PLGF Test.

Preterm is defined as between 20 weeks and 36 weeks and 6 days of pregnancy.

If you have one of these tests, it should be alongside standard clinical assessment to decide whether or not you have preterm pre-eclampsia, and therefore what care you need. If you have preterm pre-eclampsia, you need to be monitored in hospital.

These tests could particularly help if you are from an African, Caribbean or Asian family background, because this can mean there are more risks to think about.

The tests should not be used to decide when your baby should be born.

NICE said more evidence is needed on how well the tests work in pregnancies with more than one baby, and whether the tests can be used more than once.

NICE did not recommend one test: the BRAHMS sFlt-1 Kryptor/BRAHMS PLGF plus Kryptor PE ratio. It said more evidence is needed on its accuracy.

PLGF is a hormone that helps new blood vessels to grow in the placenta. In pre-eclampsia, PLGF levels can be very low, so measuring PLGF using these tests can help show if you have pre-eclampsia, or help rule it out.

Is this treatment right for me?

Your healthcare professionals should give you clear information, talk with you about your options and listen carefully to your views and concerns. Your family can be involved too, if you wish. Read more about making decisions about your care.

Questions to think about

  • What are the risks or side effects? How likely are they?
  • What happens if I do not want to have the tests?
  • Can I choose where to have this test? Can I have this test at my local clinic or hospital?
  • How long will the test take?
  • Will I be able to drive to and from the appointment?
  • How do I get my test results? Will there be a follow-up appointment?

Information and support

The NHS website may be a good place to find out more.

These organisations can give you advice and support:

You can also get support from your local Healthwatch.

NICE is not responsible for the quality or accuracy of any information or advice provided by these organisations.

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