Why is it necessary to have a fetal echocardiogram?
1. What is fetal echocardiography?
Fetal echocardiography is a method of using ultrasound waves to examine the fetal heart to help assess the fetal cardiovascular status such as heart rate, structure and function of the fetal heart. Usually, when the fetus is over 20 weeks, it will be large enough and can be carefully examined through fetal echocardiography.
Currently, advanced fetal echocardiography technology can detect about 99% of congenital heart defects during pregnancy. For some mild cases of fetal heart defects, fetal echocardiography may not be visible, but most severe and life-threatening malformations of the baby can be detected by fetal echocardiography shortly after birth.
2. Why need echocardiography?
For mild heart defects, the child can heal on his own or live a normal life. But severe malformations can lead to complications such as:
Heart failure Increased pulmonary artery pressure Lack of oxygen to nourish the body leads to retardation of motor, mental, intellectual development of the child, and the child's body is easily weakened have an infectious disease. Causes difficulty breathing due to lack of oxygen, severe can cause death. The detection and monitoring throughout pregnancy thanks to echocardiography helps cardiologists identify the type of heart defect, thereby planning treatment for the baby as soon as it is born and limiting the waiting time for surgery. Reduce costs in the meantime.
In addition, fetal echocardiography also helps to limit unnecessary termination of pregnancy due to errors in diagnosis and consultation of congenital heart disease.
3. Who should have fetal echocardiography?
Having a family history of congenital heart disease. Pregnant women with diabetes, certain genetic diseases or certain autoimmune diseases (lupus, scleroderma...). Infection with rubella, flu during pregnancy, especially in the first 3 months of pregnancy. Using some drugs such as anticonvulsants, anti-depressants, anti-prostaglandin synthesis... Pregnancy thanks to artificial insemination. Periodic fetal ultrasound detects cardiac abnormalities. Having other congenital diseases and having a high risk of congenital heart disease: There are extra-cardiac abnormalities such as umbilical hernia, diaphragmatic hernia, duodenal bulb atrophy, pyloric stenosis, nape edema... Arrhythmias pregnant. Abnormal nuchal translucency during the first trimester of pregnancy. Multiple pregnancy, suspected twin exchange syndrome.
4. Notes on fetal echocardiography
Fetal echocardiography often in the first months may not have completely accurate results, so it is important to follow-up surveys in the following months to detect malformations necessary.
Vinmec International General Hospital offers a Package Maternity Care Program for pregnant women right from the first months of pregnancy with a full range of antenatal care visits, periodical 3D and 4D ultrasounds and routine tests to ensure that the mother is healthy and the fetus is developing comprehensively.
Pregnant women will be consulted and checked for health under the close supervision of experienced and specialized Obstetricians, helping mothers have more knowledge to protect their health during pregnancy as well as reduce reduce complications for mother and child.
If you have a need for consultation and examination at the Hospitals of the National Health System, please book an appointment on the website for the best service.
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