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Chromosome analysis—also known as karyotype—is a test to find the size, shape, and number of chromosomes in a sample of body cells. Chromosome analysis can be done on blood, tissue, or cells from amniotic fluid (the fluid that surrounds the baby in the womb).
Extra or missing chromosomes, or abnormal positions of chromosome pieces, can cause problems with a person's growth, development, and body functions. Chromosome analysis can help find out if:
Last Revised: November 29, 2012
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Siobhan M. Dolan, MD, MPH - Reproductive Genetics
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