Objective. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the clinical usefulness of a fetal anatomic survey on follow-up antepartum sonograms. Methods. A retrospective follow-up study was conducted at a low-risk maternity clinic from July 1, 2005, to June 30, 2006. Eligible women had at least 1 prior sonographic examination beyond 18 weeks' gestation with a complete and normal fetal anatomic assessment and at least 1 follow-up sonogram. Full fetal anatomic surveys were performed on all follow-up sonograms regardless of the indication. Neonatal charts were reviewed for those patients whose follow-up sonograms revealed unanticipated fetal anomalies. Neonatal intervention was defined as surgical or medical therapy or arranged subspecialty follow-up specifically for the suspected fetal anomaly. Results. Of a total of 4269 sonographic examinations performed, 437 (10.2%) were follow-up studies. Of these, 101 (23.1%) were excluded because the initial sonogram revealed a suspected fetal anomaly, and 42 (9.8%) were excluded for other reasons. Of the remaining 294 women, 21 (7.1%) had an unanticipated fetal anomaly, most often renal pyelectasis. Compared with follow-up sonography for other reasons, repeated sonography for fetal growth evaluation yielded a higher incidence of unexpected fetal anomalies: 15 (12.3%) of 122 versus 6 (3.5%) of 172 (P = .01). When compared with the neonates in the nongrowth indications group, those neonates whose mothers had sonographic examinations for fetal growth had a higher rate of neonatal interventions: 6 (40.0%) of 15 versus 0 (0%) of 6 (P = .04). Conclusions. A fetal anatomic survey on follow-up sonograms may identify unanticipated fetal anomalies, especially when the indication is for fetal growth.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
- Acoustics and Ultrasonics