Pregnancy is an exciting and overwhelming time for most parents. With so many things to prepare for, ensuring the health of your baby is a top priority. Fetal echocardiography is an important prenatal test that can help detect heart defects in your baby before they are born. At Neptune Diagnostics Center, we provide expert fetal echocardiography services to give parents peace of mind. Here are four things you need to know about fetal echocardiography.
What is Fetal Echocardiography?
Fetal echocardiography is a specialized ultrasound that uses sound waves to create detailed images of the fetal heart. This test can help detect structural abnormalities and irregularities in the heart’s rhythm. Fetal echocardiography is typically performed between 18 and 22 weeks of pregnancy, but it can be done as early as 14 weeks. The test is non-invasive, meaning it does not harm the baby or the mother.
Who Needs Fetal Echocardiography?
Fetal echocardiography is recommended for women who have a high risk of having a baby with a heart defect. This includes women who have a family history of heart defects, have a pre-existing medical condition such as diabetes or lupus, or have had a previous child with a heart defect. Fetal echocardiography is also recommended for women who have abnormal findings on their routine prenatal ultrasound. At Neptune Diagnostics Center, we provide expert consultations to determine if fetal echocardiography is necessary for your pregnancy.
What Can Fetal Echocardiography Detect?
Fetal echocardiography can detect a wide range of heart defects and abnormalities. Some of the most common abnormalities that can be detected include:
- Septal defects: Holes in the wall between the heart’s chambers
- Valve abnormalities: Malformations of the heart valves
- Arrhythmias: Irregular heart rhythms
- Hypoplastic left heart syndrome: Underdevelopment of the left side of the heart
Early detection of these abnormalities can help parents and healthcare providers prepare for the baby’s care after birth. Some heart defects may require immediate medical intervention, such as surgery, while others may not require treatment until later in life.
What Happens During Fetal Echocardiography?
During fetal echocardiography, you will lie on an examination table, and a sonographer will apply a gel to your belly. The sonographer will then move a wand over your belly to capture images of the fetal heart. The test usually takes about 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the baby’s position and the quality of the images. At Neptune Diagnostics Center, our team of experienced technicians and physicians work together to ensure the highest quality images and accurate results.
Fetal echocardiography is an important prenatal test that can help detect heart defects and irregularities in your baby before they are born. At Neptune Diagnostics Center, we provide expert fetal echocardiography services to give parents peace of mind. If you have any questions or concerns about fetal echocardiography or other prenatal tests, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Our team of experts is dedicated to providing the highest quality care to ensure the health and well-being of your baby.