Clinical implications of fetal magnetocardiography


Quartero, H.W.P. and Stinstra, J.G. and Golbach, E.G.M. and Meijboom, E.J. and Peters, M.J. (2002) Clinical implications of fetal magnetocardiography. Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology, 20 (2). pp. 142-153. ISSN 0960-7692

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To test the usefulness and reliability of fetal magnetocardiography as a diagnostic or screening tool, both for fetuses with arrhythmias as well as for fetuses with a congenital heart defect.

We describe 21 women with either a fetal arrhythmia or a congenital heart defect discovered during prenatal evaluation by sonography. Four fetuses showed a complete atrioventricular block, two an atrial flutter, nine ventricular extrasystole, and one a complete irregular heart rate. Five fetuses were suspected to have a congenital heart defect. In all cases magnetocardiograms were recorded.

Nine fetuses with extrasystole showed a range of premature atrial contractions, premature junctional beats or premature ventricular contractions. Two fetuses with atrial flutter showed typical flutter waves and four fetuses with complete atrioventricular block showed an uncoupling of P-wave and QRS complex. One fetus showed a pattern suggestive of a bundle branch block. In three of four fetuses with confirmed congenital heart defects the magnetocardiogram showed abnormalities.

Fetal magnetocardiography allows an insight into the electrophysiological aspects of the fetal heart, is accurate in the classification of fetal arrhythmias, and shows potential as a tool in defining a population at risk for congenital heart defects.
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Copyright:© 2002 ISUOG
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Metis ID: 206766