Fetal fibronectin measurement
What is this test?
This test measures the levels of a protein called fetal fibronectin in cervicovaginal secretions. It is used to help assess the risk of preterm birth. It is also used to predict successful induction of labor in pregnancy.
Why do I need this test?
- Onset of labor induced
- Premature labor
When and how often should I have this test?
How should I get ready for the test?
You may be asked to sign a consent form prior to this procedure. Review the consent form with the healthcare worker, and ask any questions that you have before signing the consent form. Tell the healthcare worker if you have a medical condition or are using a medication or supplement that causes excessive bleeding. Do not have sexual intercourse for 24 hours before the procedure.
You may be asked to urinate prior to collection of cervicovaginal secretions. This may make it easier for the healthcare worker to collect the sample, and may make the procedure more comfortable for you.
How is the test done?
To collect a sample of cervicovaginal secretions, you may be asked to lie on your back with your legs spread and feet placed in stirrups. A healthcare worker will use a swab to collect secretions from an area inside the vagina. The secretions are then sent for testing.
How will the test feel?
What should I do after the test?
Ask your healthcare worker if there are special instructions for you to follow after this test.
What are the risks?
Ask the healthcare worker to explain the risks of this test or procedure to you before it is performed.
What are normal results for this test?
Laboratory test results may vary depending on your age, gender, health history, the method used for the test, and many other factors. If your results are different from the results suggested below, this may not mean that you have a disease. Contact your healthcare worker if you have any questions. The following is considered to be a normal result for this test:
- Pregnancy: =50 nanograms/mL 
What might affect my test results?
- Recent sexual intercourse 
- Preeclampsia 
- Recent cervical examination 
- Vaginal bleeding 
- Disinfectant use 
What follow up should I do after this test?
Where can I get more information?
- March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation - http://www.marchofdimes.com
 Tekesin I, Marek S, Hellmeyer L, et al: Assessment of rapid fetal fibronectin in predicting preterm delivery. Obstet Gynecol 2005; 105(2):280-284.
 ACOG: American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology: Management of preterm labor. ACOG Practice Bulletin No 43. Obstet Gynecol 2003; 101:1039-1047.
 Leitich H & Kaider A: Fetal fibronectin--how useful is it in the prediction of preterm birth. BJOG 2003; 110 Suppl 20:66-70.
 Honest H, Bachmann LM, Gupta JK, et al: Accuracy of cervicovaginal fetal fibronectin test in predicting risk of spontaneous preterm birth: systematic review.. BMJ 2002; 325:301.
 Leitich H, Egarter C, Kaider A, et al: Obstetrics. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 1999; 180(5):1169-1176.
 Garite TJ, Casal D, Garcia-Alonso A, et al: Fetal fibronectin: a new tool for the prediction of successful induction of labor. Am J Obstet. Gynecol. 1996; 175(6):1516-1521.
 Eriksen NL, Parisi VM, Daoust S, et al: Fetal fibronectin: a method for detecting the presence of amniotic fluid. Obstet Gynecol 1992; 80(3 Pt 1):451-454.
 Lukes AS, Thorp JM Jr, Eucker B, et al: Predictors of positivity for fetal fibronectin in patients with symptoms of preterm labor.. Am J Obstet Gynecol 1997; 176:639-641.
 Wu AHB: Tietz Clinical Guide to Laboratory Tests, 4th ed. WB Saunders, St. Louis, MO, 2006, pp -.
 Yeast JD & Lu G: Biochemical markers for the prediction of preterm delivery. Clin Perinatol 2007; 34(4):573-86, vi.
Last Updated: 11/4/2014