Abnormalities after anomaly scans are a good topic for discussion. A prospective study found that performing an MRI scan helps to diagnose fetal brain abnormalities more accurately in women whose 20-week pregnancy ultrasound scan revealed a potential problem. Continue to read the blog for more insights.

How common are fetal abnormalities at a 20-week scan?

Congenital heart defects are one of the most common fetal abnormalities and a leading cause of infant death diagnosed at a 20-week scan.

The fetal medicine specialist will carefully examine the four chambers of the heart, valves, and major arteries will all be carefully examined. If any heart defects are discovered, treatment may be initiated before or shortly after birth.

An expert technician may also be able to detect a cleft lip and, less frequently, a cleft palate. If your child has a cleft lip, you will be referred to a specialist to discuss treatment options, which may include surgical repair.

He or she also looks for the bladder to ensure the kidneys are doing their job, as well as scans the spine for any openings.

The shape, size, and structure of the head will be examined for rare developmental disorders such as anencephaly, which can be fatal.

The 20-week scan can reveal whether the bones of the spine are perfectly coordinated and completely covered by skin.

Both kidneys should be functioning normally, with urine flowing into the bladder. Arms, legs, hands, and feet should all be clearly visible on screen at 20 weeks so that the sonographer can ensure proper development. These are examined by your fetal medicine expert.

Some other abnormalities that get detected in the anomaly scan are, and serious anencephaly, open spina bifida, diaphragmatic hernia, gastroschisis, exomphalos cardiac abnormalities are all possible. Lethal skeletal dysplasia, bilateral renal agenesis, T18 Patau’s syndrome, Edwards’ syndrome, or T13 are some other anomalies of this week’s scan.

fetal abnormalities

Can abnormalities develop after an anomaly scan?

Can abnormalities develop after anomaly scan
A 20-week MRI scan can help diagnose fetal brain abnormalities, according to a new study.

brain abnormality anomaly scan

Within 14 days of the potential fetal brain abnormality being detected, the women in the study had an in-utero MRI scan. The researchers compared the accuracy of clinicians’ diagnosis of fetal brain abnormality after the ultrasound scan to the diagnosis from the MRI scan, using the definitive diagnosis made by additional tests after the baby was born or at autopsy.

When compared to ultrasound, the in utero MRI scanning improved the accuracy of diagnosing fetal brain abnormalities by 23% (95% confidence interval 18% to 27%) in fetuses with a gestational age of 18-24 weeks and by 29% (23% to 36%) in those with a gestational age of 24 weeks or more.

What scan comes after an anomaly scan?

If your pregnancy is normal, you won’t need any more scans after your anomaly scan around 20 weeks.

Your fetal medicine specialist will monitor your baby’s development by measuring the distance between the front of your pelvis (the symphysis pubis) and the top of your womb (uterus). This is referred to as the fundal height.

To ensure your health, your midwife will also: take your blood pressure, test your urine, and collect blood samples.

If any problems are discovered, or if you had complications in a previous pregnancy, you may be offered additional scans.

Can the anomaly scan be repeated?

If you’ve been asked to repeat the scan, don’t be concerned. About 15% of scans will be repeated for one reason or another, and most problems that require a repeat scan are minor.

The most common reason is that the fetal medicine specialist has not seen everything necessary.

This could be due to your baby not being in the best position for scanning, or to your being overweight. If you have fibroids, they may also obstruct the view of your fetal medicine specialist. If you have any of these symptoms, you will be offered another anomaly scan in 23 weeks.

23 weeks scan

Wrapping up

Ultrasounds like anomaly scans are safe for your baby because they only use sound waves. They do not pose any significant risks. But the very long list of abnormalities that the anomaly scan detects can intimidate you. Do not worry. It only gives you a heads-up to parents-to-be to be aware of your baby’s health.

The scan can certainly add to the excitement of this exciting ultrasound. It’s important to remember, though, that identifying any potential abnormalities early on will help you and your fetal medicine specialist to plan for birth and beyond. It can aid in your emotional and mental preparation for the journey ahead.

At Jammi Scans, we are here to diagnose you for anomalies and give you a chance how to deal with pregnancy’s discomforts. Our services include obstetric scans, interventional procedures, and gynecology scans. Contact us to book your anomaly scan now.

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