Direct detection of the fragile X mutation by DNA analysis has greatly simplified prenatal diagnosis of this disease. However, women carrying a fragile X premutation may pass their expanded trinucleotide repeat to sons without expansion to a full mutation. Such sons are predicted to be intellectually normal. In this situation, the accuracy with which the fetal status can be inferred from analysis of chorionic villus sample (CVS) DNA is unclear. We describe such a case, in which it was felt necessary to proceed to fetal blood sampling despite technically unambiguous DNA results from the CVS. The lack of prospective data means that this dilemma may be expected to recur over the next few years when performing prenatal diagnosis on fragile X premutation carriers.