40 women who underwent amniocentesis were administered the Symptom Questionnaire to evaluate changes in psychological distress. Anxiety, depression, somatic symptoms and hostility significantly decreased after the results of the procedure were communicated to the patient, replicating the findings in a previous study. Psychological distress, however, returned to the initial levels in the third trimester of pregnancy. Women whose only indication for amniocentesis was an age of 35 years or older displayed significantly higher hostility and somatic symptoms and less contentment before the procedure than the other women. Subsequently these differences lost their significance and the two groups showed similar patterns of psychological distress throughout the pregnancy.

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