Fetal echocardiography at West Virginia University: a seven-year experience
The West Virginia Medical Journal
S LynchS Einzig
The last decade has seen tremendous growth and utilization of fetal echocardiography. In order to assess the indications and yield of fetal echocardiography at West Virginia University, all fetal echocardiograms performed during a seven-year period were reviewed. There were 931 fetal echocardiograms performed on 803 women during this time period and there was a large increase in referral rate as has been seen in other regions. The highest yield of abnormalities was seen in fetuses referred secondary to the finding of an abnormal fetal cardiac exam on routine screening ultrasound (55.6%), or fetal anomalies of other organs (8.2%). These two indications alone were responsible for 77.8% of identified cases of congenital heart disease by fetal echocardiography during this time period. The resultant findings highlight the need for thorough obstetrical screening ultrasound, including the four chamber view of the heart.
Birth defects encompass structural and functional alterations that occur during embryonic or fetal development and are present since birth. The cause may be genetic, environmental or unknown and can result in physical and/or mental impairment. Here is the latest research on birth defects.