Bringing a baby into the world is a life-changing experience. Exciting, yet daunting, overwhelming but joyous, it’s no wonder that most parents frequently cite the days their children were born as the happiest days of their lives. 

However, the jubilation new parents experience at the birth of their baby can sometimes give way to natural worries about their health. Do they have any conditions I should know about? Will they be predisposed to any allergies or intolerances? How can I find out about these to start preparing for their future?

Knowing the answers to these questions through post-natal screening can help to alleviate a lot of the worry that new parents often feel about their baby’s health.


Blood Spot Test

One example of post-natal screening is the blood spot test, or heel prick test as it’s commonly known. This test is offered to all babies when they’re around a week old and involves taking a small blood sample to test for a range of diseases, including:

Sickle Cell Disease – a condition which affects haemoglobin, the protein in red blood cells responsible for carrying oxygen around the body. It can cause severe pain and lead to life-threatening infections.

Cystic Fibrosis – cystic fibrosis is an inherited condition that affects the lungs and digestive system, causing children in infancy to be susceptible to chest infections and making it hard for them to put on weight.

Congenital hypothyroidism – congenital hypothyroidism is caused by a lack of the hormone thyroxine. It can cause development issues and learning difficulties if left untreated.

Inherited metabolic diseases – Babies are screened for six inherited metabolic disorders with the blood spot test but it’s important to let your healthcare professional know if your family has a history of any of the following:

These diseases have different symptoms but can all cause severe illness which can be life-threatening.

Severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) – In some parts of the UK, the blood spot test is being used to screen for SCID, a condition affecting the immune system which makes it difficult for babies to fight off infections.

It’s important to consult your healthcare professional about the blood spot test and what it entails.


Filling In The Gaps With BabyInsight

As insightful and important as the blood spot test is, there are some deficiencies and conditions that it doesn’t provide information on, such as celiac disease and lactose intolerance.

We offer a postnatal DNA screening service called BabyInsight that can give you the answers you need when it comes to your baby’s health. Testing for a range of manageable conditions and sensitivities, BabyInsight can provide you with information about whether your baby is predisposed to

AAT deficiency

This genetic condition raises the risk of lung disease. Knowing about it sooner rather than later means that you can begin to make lifestyle changes to accommodate for this predisposition, like keeping your baby away from second-hand smoke, dust and fumes, which could all exacerbate their risk.

Gluten sensitivity

Testing for gluten sensitivity can provide information on whether your baby is likely to develop celiac disease, a condition that causes the immune system to attack itself after the consumption of gluten. With BabyInsight, you can begin to take steps to safeguard your baby’s health.

Lactose intolerance

As with gluten sensitivity, screening for lactose intolerance – a condition where the body finds it difficult to break down the sugar lactose, which is mainly found in milk and dairy products – gives you a head start on planning ahead for your baby’s diet.

Drug-induced deafness

There are some drugs that can cause hearing loss because of their toxicity to the inner ear or auditory nerve. Screening for a genetic predisposition to this condition means you’re able to be selective about what drugs are administered to your child.

Hereditary fructose intolerance

This metabolic disease is caused by the absence of the enzyme aldolase B. For people who have HFI, ingesting fructose and sucrose causes severe hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and can lead to a buildup of dangerous substances in the liver. Knowing about whether your baby is predisposed to HFI means that you can start to make choices to protect your baby’s health.


How It Works

The BabyInsight testing process couldn’t be simpler. You’ll have the choice between using a mouth swab or a small portion of umbilical cord blood (if you’ve chosen to store your baby’s cord blood with us) which can then be tested against these five central conditions.

The post-natal screening test results will be sent to you as soon as they’re available so you can start taking steps to make sure your baby is as healthy and happy as they can be, both now and in the future.


Find out more…

If you want more information about BabyInsight or any of the other services we provide, fill out the form below. It’ll also get you a FREE Parents Guide to Cord Blood Banking.

Feel free to also contact us on 01444 874 950 or at to speak to one of our specialist team. 


All you need to know to make an informed decision. Provide your contact details to request: – Complete Welcome Pack and Parent’s Guide – Information via email – Contact from our specialist advisors  


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