The CHC at the AUBMC provides a comprehensive and multidisciplinary Fetal Heart Program that allows for early detection of congenital heart disease before the child is born, at around 18 - 24 weeks of gestation. This new program is one of a kind in the country and in the region as it aims to provide comprehensive management of the baby with heart disease even before birth. Our team of specialists uses the most advanced technologies in order to provide an accurate and timely diagnosis of congenital heart disease in utero. The impact of prenatal diagnosis of congenital heart disease has been shown to improve the outcome by detecting cardiac lesions even prior to the child’s birth. This approach helps rationally and emotionally for a better preparation of the family for each step in the continuum of the baby’s heart care.
We partner with obstetricians, family medicine practitioners and other specialists to evaluate patients with risk factors or circumstances that may result in cardiac defects, including:
- Maternal systemic diseases (Lupus, Diabetes, etc.)
- Family history of previous child with congenital heart disease
- Late maternal age
- Maternal intake of potentially teratogenic medications or drugs
- Maternal infections
- Pregnancy conceived through artificial reproductive techniques
- Abnormal obstetrical ultrasound or inability to visualize the fetal heart
- Fetal genetic and extracardiac anomalies
- Suspected fetal arrhythmias
- Fetal hydrops
Continuing Fetal Care/A Collaborative Relationship
Upon diagnosis, our fetal cardiology team coordinates for further evaluations by subspecialists (such as genetic referral and counseling), as deemed necessary, as well as meeting with the neonatology team to prepare the family for the expected post-natal care.