Display Mode:

    Main content

    Health Information

    Chromosome Analysis (Karyotype)

    Chromosome Analysis (Karyotype)

    Chromosome analysis-also known as karyotype-is a test to find the size, shape, and number of chromosomes in a sample of body cells. Chromosome analysis can be done on blood, tissue, or cells from amniotic fluid (the fluid that surrounds the baby in the womb).

    Extra or missing chromosomes, or abnormal positions of chromosome pieces, can cause problems with a person's growth, development, and body functions. Chromosome analysis can help find out if:

    • The chromosomes of an adult have an abnormality that can be passed on to a child.
    • A chromosome problem is preventing a woman from becoming pregnant or causing her to miscarry.
    • A chromosome problem is present in a baby.
    • Chromosomal problems may have caused a baby to be stillborn.
    • The cause of a birth defect or disability is a chromosomal defect.

    Current as of: October 13, 2016

    Author: Healthwise Staff

    Medical Review: Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine & Siobhan M. Dolan, MD, MPH - Reproductive Genetics

    This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

    © 1995-2017 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.