What do the guidelines say?

The fFN test is the only named biomarker test recommended in the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) clinical guidelines for the risk assessment of preterm labour & birth.1

The NICE guidelines for preterm labour & birth encourage fFN testing to be considered to determine the likelihood of birth within 48 hours for women who are >30 weeks pregnant.1 Further guidelines on the use of biomarker tests to help diagnose preterm labour in women concluded that for women who present at 30 weeks or above, the most appropriate comparator was fFN at a threshold of 50 nanograms/millilitre (ng/ml). For women who present at less than 30 weeks, a treat-all management pathway and fFN testing should be considered to reflect variation in current practice.2

You can download the relevant NICE resources below to learn more.

Biomarker tests to help diagnose pretermlabour in women with intact membranes

NICE Guidance (July 2018)
Preterm labour and birth

NICE Guideline (November 2015)



  1. National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Preterm labour and birth guidance. Published November 2015. Available at: https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng25/chapter/recommendations#diagnosing-preterm-labour-for-women-with-intact-membranes
  2. National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Biomarker tests to help diagnose preterm labour in women with intact membranes. Published July 2018. Available at: https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/dg33/chapter/5-Committee-discussion

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