BACKGROUND: Complete atrioventricular block in fetuses is known to be mostly associated with autoimmune disease and can be irreversible if no steroids treatment is provided. Conventional methods used in clinical practice for diagnosing fetal arrhythmia are limited since they do not reflect the primary electrophysiological conduction processes that take place in the myocardium. The non-invasive fetal electrocardiogram has the potential to better support fetal arrhythmias diagnosis through the continuous analysis of the beat to beat variation of the fetal heart rate and morphological analysis of the PQRST complex.
CASE PRESENTATION: We present two retrospective case reports on which atrioventricular block diagnosis could have been supported by the non-invasive fetal electrocardiogram. The two cases comprised a 22-year-old pregnant woman with the gestational age of 31 weeks and a 25-year-old pregnant woman with the gestational age of 41 weeks. Both women were admitted to the Department of Maternal and Fetal Medicine at the Kyiv and Kharkiv municipal perinatal clinics. Patients were observed using standard fetal monitoring methods as well as the non-invasive fetal electrocardiogram. The non-invasive fetal electrocardiographic recordings were analyzed retrospectively, where it is possible to identify the presence of the atrioventricular block.
CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrates, for the first time, the feasibility of the non-invasive fetal electrocardiogram as a supplementary method to diagnose of the fetal atrioventricular block. Combined with current fetal monitoring techniques, non-invasive fetal electrocardiography could support clinical decisions.
|Journal||Maternal health, neonatology and perinatology|
|State||Published - 2017|