Abnormalities of the developing heart are among the most common structural abnormalities identified during fetal life.
Abnormalities of the developing heart are among the most common structural abnormalities identified during fetal life. Detection and management of fetal cardiac conditions is important because serious heart abnormalities are a major contributor to death and long term health problems in young children. Diagnosing heart problems prior to birth allows families to participate in important decisions regarding the future management of the pregnancy, and ensures adequate planning for the baby’s needs at birth and beyond. For these reasons, the Mercy Perinatal Fetal Cardiac Service has input from a children’s heart specialist (paediatric cardiologist, Dr Lance Fong), who works alongside our obstetricians, genetics team, neonatology team and maternal fetal medicine specialists to ensure that the unique needs of every baby with a heart abnormality- and his or her family- are met.
We understand that families facing an abnormality of their baby’s heart structure, function or rhythm require specialized multidisciplinary care. In this clinic, our paediatric cardiologist works with the maternal fetal medicine and neonatal team to ensure accuracy of diagnosis, offer fetal treatment where indicated and develop a clearly communicated plan for the time of birth and beyond. Our team of neonatologists and neonatal nurses provide the full range of medical and critical care services for these babies, and have established pathways with Royal Children's Hospital for access to surgical advice, consultation and transfer.
We welcome referrals to this clinic for suspected or confirmed structural abnormalities of the fetal heart, fetal brady and tach-arrhythmias, pregnancies at high risk for complete congenital heart block, suspected fetal cardiomyopathy.