Prenatal diagnosis of heart defects aids survival after surgery

BMJ 2001; 322 doi: (Published 17 March 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;322:638
  1. David Spurgeon
  1. Quebec

    Babies in whom a heart defect was diagnosed before birth were more likely to survive initial surgery to correct the defect than those in whom a defect was diagnosed after birth, a new study has shown. Only two thirds of those with a postnatal diagnosis survived.

    Dr Wayne Tworetzky, lead investigator of the study, said: “This is the first study to demonstrate that patients diagnosed prenatally with hypoplastic left heart syndrome have improved survival after the first stage of surgery compared to those diagnosed after birth” (Circulation 2001;103:1269-73).

    Dr Tworetzky is a clinical instructor in the cardiology department at Boston Children's Hospital. The study, which …

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