Maternal Serum AFP : 5059

The MSAFP test in pregnant women should be performed between 15.0 and 22.9 weeks gestational age, although the optimal period is 15.0-16.9 weeks. This time frame allows sufficient opportunity for further diagnostic studies if the initial MSAFP results are abnormal. Specimens submitted before 15.0 weeks or after 22.9 weeks gestation cannot be properly evaluated. The following information must be provided for interpretation of results: Maternal date of birth (mm/dd/yy), Estimated Date of Delivery by US/LMP/PE, weight, race, insulin-dependent diabetes status, repeat sample (Y/N), number of fetuses, and neural tube defect history.

Please submit completed Maternal Patient History Form.  See link in Additional Infomation.
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Test Code
MATAFQ or 5059

Alias/See Also
AFP; Alpha-Fetoprotein; Maternal Screen

CPT Codes

Serum separator tube or plain red.

Transport Container
Centrifuge the serum separator tube and transport. If plain red centrifuge and aliquot 1 mL serum (Min: 0.5 mL) into a standard transport tube.

Transport Temperature

Specimen Stability
Ambient: 7 days; Refrigerated: 7 days; Frozen: 28 days

Reject Criteria (Eg, hemolysis? Lipemia? Thaw/Other?)
Gross hemolysis


Setup Schedule
Monday - Saturday

Report Available
2-3 days (From receipt at performing laboratory)

MSAFP results consistent with increased risk of NTD may be followed-up with appropriate diagnostic testing as detailed in the report. MSAFP does not screen for chromosomal abnormalities.

Reference Range
By report.

Clinical Significance
Maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein (MSAFP) is used for prenatal screening of open neural tube defects (ONTD). MSAFP screening detects 88% of anencephaly and 79% of open spina bifida with a 3% false positive rate. Normal results do not ensure birth of a normal infant. In addition, 2-3% of newborns have some type of physical or mental defect, many of which may be undetectable with current prenatal diagnostic procedures.

Performing Laboratory
Quest Diagnostics

Additional Information
Maternal Patient History Form

The CPT Codes provided in this document are based on AMA guidelines and are for informational purposes only. CPT coding is the sole responsibility of the billing party. Please direct any questions regarding coding to the payor being billed. Any Profile/panel component may be ordered separately. Reflex tests are performed at an additional charge.