Using innovative fetal echocardiography, the physicians and team at the Cardiac Center at Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital can evaluate the heart of a baby during the mother's pregnancy. Fetal echocardiography is performed by a skilled cardiologist or perinatologist. By doing this procedure, we can be prepared for medical and surgical intervention once the baby is born.
A fetal echocardiogram is typically performed in the second trimester of pregnancy and can be done using an abdominal or transvaginal ultrasound. If necessary, the test will be repeated to confirm any findings. While most unborn babies do not require a fetal echocardiogram, there are some situations where the test is recommended. These situations may include, but are not limited to:
- Family history of congenital heart disease
- Sibling born with a congenital heart defect
- Discovery of a chromosomal or genetic abnormality
- If mother abused drugs or alcohol during pregnancy
- If mother has diabetes, phenylketonuria or a connective tissue disease such as lupus
To schedule an appointment or learn more about the Cardiac Center at Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital, please call 954-265-3437.