Science Dictionary
amniocentesis   (ām'nē-ō-sěn-tē'sĭs)  Pronunciation Key 
A procedure usually done about the sixteenth week of pregnancy in which a small sample of amniotic fluid is drawn out of the uterus through a needle inserted in the abdomen. The fluid is analyzed to determine the gender of the fetus or the presence of genetic abnormalities.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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