What you can expect

During the procedure

During the fetal fibronectin test, you'll lie on your back on an exam table. Your health care provider will place a speculum in your vagina and use a cotton swab to gently swipe secretions near the cervix.

After the procedure

This sample will be sent to a lab for analysis. Results are typically available within a few hours.

In some cases, a vaginal ultrasound is done after the sample is taken to measure the length of your cervix. During the ultrasound, you'll lie on your back and your health care provider or technician will place a slender, wandlike device in your vagina. The device uses sound waves to digitally create images on a monitor.

April 21, 2016
References
  1. Lockwood CJ. Diagnosis of preterm labor and overview of preterm birth. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Feb. 21, 2016.
  2. Fetal fibronectin. Lab Tests Online. https://labtestsonline.org/understanding/analytes/ffn/tab/sample/. Accessed Feb. 20, 2016.
  3. DeFranco EA, et al. Improving the screening accuracy for preterm labor: Is the combination of fetal fibronectin and cervical length in symptomatic patients a useful predictor of preterm birth? A systematic review. American Journal of Obstetetrics and Gynecology. 2013;208:233.
  4. Van Baaren GJ, et al. Risk factors for preterm delivery: Do they add to fetal fibronectin testing and cervical length measurement in the prediction of preterm delivery in symptomatic women? European Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology. 2015;192:79.
  5. McLaren JS, et al. Prediction of spontaneous preterm birth using quantitative fetal fibronectin after recent sexual intercourse. American Journal of Obstetetrics and Gynecology. 2015;212:89.
  6. Wick MJ (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. March 23, 2016.