Prenatal Information

Be Proactive!

You are your own baby’s advocate! Information is empowering for expecting parents. Identifying heart issues before birth can allow expecting parents to meet the doctors who will care for their baby after delivery. Treatment options can be discussed ahead of time, and medicine can be given to pregnant mothers to help deal with any fetusContinue Reading

CHD a Risk With Single Umbilical Artery Pregnancy Complication

What is Single Umbilical Artery? Normally, when the umbilical cord develops, it forms three vessels: two arteries and one vein. However, in some cases, just one artery develops. Precisely why this occurs is not entirely known. It is suspected, though, that one artery may simply stop growing as it develops or perhaps that the primordialContinue Reading

Heart Defects May Occur in Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

Definition Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) is a condition that results from prenatal alcohol exposure. If you drink during pregnancy, you place your baby at risk of fetal alcohol syndrome. The defects that are part of fetal alcohol syndrome are irreversible and can include serious physical, mental and behavioral problems, though they vary from one childContinue Reading

Anti-depressants during pregnancy & CHD

Pregnant women who take antidepressants may have a slightly higher risk of delivering babies with rare birth defects. But the risks posed by the drugs are very small, according to two studies and an editorial in the New England Journal of Medicine. Both studies examined SSRIs, or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, a popular class ofContinue Reading

Risk of Heart Defects with Maternal PKU Syndrome

Phenylketonuria (PKU) is an autosomal recessive disorder of amino acid metabolism affecting approximately 1/10,000-15,000 infants in North America. It is most often due to deficiency of the enzyme phenylalanine hydroxylase which causes the accumulation of harmful metabolites, including phenylketones. If untreated, PKU leads to mental retardation, seizures, psychoses, eczema and a distinctive “mousy” odor. AContinue Reading

UTI Antibiotics May Up Birth Defect Risk

Some of the antibiotics used to treat urinary tract infections (UTI) during pregnancy may increase the risk of several birth defects if a woman uses them early in pregnancy, a new study in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine shows. Researchers found an increased risk for two classes of antibiotics: sulfonamide (example: Bactrim) andContinue Reading

Info on Tests & Procedures Often Used in Diagnosing CHD

Congenital heart defects are often, but not always, diagnosed in infancy. Some may be diagnosed before birth, and many may not be detected until much later in childhood or even in adulthood. If the heart problem is significant, your child’s pediatrician or family physician will likely refer your child to a pediatric cardiologist. Pediatric cardiologistsContinue Reading

Sensor to Detect Oxygen Loss in Unborn Children

Researchers at the University of Warwick, and the University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, have devised a new sensor which has the power to dramatically improve the amount of early warning doctors and midwives get of a dangerous situation in the birth process when the unborn child’s brain is starved of oxygen – FetalContinue Reading

Prenatal Detection of CHD: A Doctor’s Perspective

Early last week, a 17 year old woman, carrying her first baby, was seen in the office for a routine ultrasound at about 18 weeks to confirm gestational age and assess fetal anatomy. During that examination, the baby was found to have a heart abnormality called an Endocardial Cushion Defect, or A-V Canal. This particularContinue Reading

First Trimester Use Of NSAIDs Is Associated With Cardiac Abnormalities In Babies

Women who take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) early in their pregnancies may be more likely to give birth to babies with congenital defects, particularly cardiac septal defects. These are the findings of a case-control study published in the August issue of Birth Defects Research Part B, a journal published by John Wiley & Sons. ManyContinue Reading