Fertility Network UK
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Natural Killer Cell levels testing

We have been informed that there is a treatment to affect the number of NK cells which can affect possible miscarriages. However, the treatment is not on NHS and will cost for the testing, followed by prednisone steroid treatment. Anyone else have experience of this? Wiki says it's usually used for persons with repeat miscarriages. We have had just one miscarriage

1 Reply

All clinics have their own set of criteria regarding having things like your immune testing performed, and these are not considered a priority with NHS treatment. I am sure that your clinic should be able to offer it to you, but of course you are best guided by your consultant on his/her recommendations. If they don’t have the facilities to do this and feel it may be beneficial to you then they will be able to arrange for you to have the blood taken to send off to an appropriate laboratory – at a cost. Unfortunately, all the immune problems including looking for natural killer cells have not altogether been proven to cause recurrent treatment failures or miscarriage, and this may be the reason they don’t offer the test. However, if they were found, then you would probably be offered a treatment involving intra venous drugs such as immuno-globulin and also dexamethasone and prednisolone (forms of steroids). The side effects of their use, you would need to get thoroughly explained to you. I have heard increasing successes with couples who have had repeated failures undergoing treatment following a positive diagnosis to the natural killer cells and have gone on to have ongoing pregnancies and births. Sometimes the “above” treatment has been offered without testing first, but usually follows treatment failures.

Remember that if you do decide to go through the tests, they can be expensive, as often some bloods are sent away for testing.

Diane Arnold


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