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Heart defect at 20 week scan

(59 Posts)
lookatthemoon Thu 28-Sep-17 20:04:25

I had my anomaly scan today (almost 22 weeks). Really normal pregnancy so far and scan went really well up to a point. Everything measuring for dates, good heartbeat, lots of movement, organs all normal etc.

We got to the heart last (sonographer had trouble getting a good view earlier in the scan). Suddenly she told me she was worried. She couldn't see 4 heart chambers, definitely there is nothing separating the top two chambers and in addition to this she said it seemed like there were other 'complications'.

I am seeing a fetal medicine specialist on Tuesday morn. Sonographer obvs couldn't make a diagnosis but used lots of words like 'serious' and 'very worried'.

Does anyone have any hopeful stories for me? I'm realistic but just need to survive until Tuesday when I can find out exactly what is going on. Am just terrified that it will be so bad that the pregnancy won't be viable. So hard because baby looked so healthy otherwise and is still kicking away inside me.

Give me hope/comfort?

QuantamBaby Thu 28-Sep-17 21:01:44

Hi, I didn’t want to read and run. I’m sorry you are going through this, it must be very worrying. My only advice would be not to google (you tend to only see the negatives) and trust that you are in safe hands with the Drs. They can do absolutely amazing things with the tiniest of hearts. Good luck to you both x

MotherofSausage Thu 28-Sep-17 21:12:49

So sorry, OP - didn't want to read and run. I understand your fears very well as my DS was diagnosed with a lung defect at his 20 week scan. I had a similar wait to see a fetal medicine specialist and I thought I would go mad waiting. What I actually did was take up knitting as a distraction and clean the house a lot - not that I necessarily recommend that, but it was anything to take my mind off what was wrong with my boy. sad

In our case, we had prepared for the worst and it turned out to be not so bad and our DS is hale and hearty, just with a malformity in his chest. I was subsequently told that DS was a VOMIT (victim of modern imaging technology...) and that many of the things that were flagged at 20 week scans actually end up being less serious than they first appear because the sonographer has to report everything.

Sincerely wishing you all the very best for Tuesday flowers

maxiflump1 Thu 28-Sep-17 21:13:26

Hi op. We had a similar situation. The sonographer didn't exactly say that they were worries but the fact that we got booked in with a cardio-fetal specialist within 48 hours and they put us in a relatives style room was enough to make us panic. Sonographer also stated they couldn't get a clear view of the 4 chambers. I did a lot of googling in those 48 hours and drove myself nearly crazy.

When we met the feral cardioglost we had a scan using a Doppler and within 39 seconds the doctor was smiling. He could see all the correct bits where they should be and our baby looked perfectly healthy. He told us that quite a lot of babies are just in awkward positions which mean you can't get a good view on abnormal scanning machine. DS was born healthy 4 months later.

I know it's difficult but try not to panic. And even if there are issues it may be something that can be treated and doesn't necessarily mean the worst. Lots of positive vibes to you flowersflowers

maxiflump1 Thu 28-Sep-17 21:14:23

Fetal not feral!!

lookatthemoon Thu 28-Sep-17 21:53:18

Thank you for your lovely replies! It does help. And for sharing good outcomes. I really hope I end up with a similar good outcome and end up a VOMIT! x

MotherofSausage Thu 28-Sep-17 22:37:22

I hope your specialist isn't feral like maxi's cardiologist!
smile

I also hope (in the nicest possible way) that you are a fellow VOMIT. The waiting is by far the worst part, so here's hoping it goes quickly and that you have reassuring news on Tuesday.

missmapp Thu 28-Sep-17 22:44:46

We had the same with ds 2 and had a fetal Heart scan . Ds does have a heart defect but it isnt as serious as they first thought. He is ten now and very healthy. He still sees his heart consultant ( the one who did the scan) every year but is well. Just to warn you though, during the scan, which lastest about twenty mibutes, the consultant said not a word. I was convinced of the worst by the end but it was fine. Silence doesnt always mean the worst !

lookatthemoon Thu 28-Sep-17 23:18:56

Thanks Missmap! I'll be prepared for the silence. From what the sonographer said I will be shocked if there isn't some defect there so am hoping for the best possible outcome from an otherwise terrible situation. Reassuring to hear that you son is doing well! smile

Findingthisdifficult1234 Fri 29-Sep-17 06:27:15

All the best OP. My daughter was born with a heart defect that wasn't picked up on the scans unfortunately. I just wanted to say that she is absolutely fine and although she still sees her heart surgeon once a year/every 2 years now you would never know and I always think at least it was her heart and not something else, there is so much they can do with the heart in regards to 'fixing' it if that makes sense x

lookatthemoon Fri 29-Sep-17 11:28:24

Thanks Difficult! These stories really do help - I do take some comfort in that everything else seemed absolutely perfect and hopefully it is a treatable heart condition. x

eden01 Sat 30-Sep-17 01:46:42

Hi OP, I have had 3 pregnancies all of which have involved a heart specialist at some point. With my first, my daughter was diagnosed with a ARSA which is a v minor heart defect which can only be seen with the most recent technology - no issue on her heart or anything else and the specialist we saw almost didn't want to tell us because it was so minor. This had nothing to do with any of the 4 chambers, it's a very small anomaly. I only saw a metal cardiologist the first time because we had a high nuchal reading at 10wks. My second pregnancy did not end so well. The baby was found to have serious heart issues not compatible with life (at 20weeks) - complications with arteries and the shape of the heart itself being rotated the wrong way. Also a large VSD in between chambers (which wasn't the major issue and in itself is one that can be fixed). I ended up having to terminate at 23 weeks. My third and current pregnancy I have seen heart specialists many times (for my own peace of mind) and so far so good. Having had a lot more contact than I ever dreamed of with fetal cardiologists I have found them all to be amazing experts in their fields who aren't necessarily warm/fuzzy but who will give you the info you need straight and the confidence to make a decision. Take some comfort from what other people have said about babies being in awkward positions and actually waiting until you have some further evidence of any specific heart defects before completely panicking (easier said than done, I panicked a lot). I also sent myself mad with google but I won't lecture you on not doing that as it's human nature.

It is so hard to see an otherwise healthy baby on the scan and feel it moving around and kicking and then to have such horrible news. However you are in the best possible hands now and there is a huge spectrum from minor to major in heart defects that until you know exactly what you are dealing with you will send yourself crazy wondering where you fall (If there is in fact any issues at all).

Wishing you lots of luck for your appointment on Tuesday x

lookatthemoon Sat 30-Sep-17 10:49:47

Thanks Eden - I am so sorry for your loss with baby no.2. How awful for you. I hope this doesn't come across in the wrong way (am in zombie coping mode) but it is good to hear that even after the unimaginable happening you have gone on to have a healthy pregnancy. I wish you the absolute best health for you and baby no.3. xx

Chinnychinnychinnychib Sat 30-Sep-17 11:00:39

I've been there, op. The outcome was not good for us - the baby had a very rare single ventricle condition which could be potentially 'managed' surgically but not cured; this would have meant multiple surgeries, lots of restrictions on activity etc and eventual heart failure in the teenage years which would necessitate a heart transplant. We terminated at 23 weeks. The specialists were extraordinary, so knowledgeable and kind and realistic about what future our baby would have. It was devastating for us. We went on to have dd3 who is heart healthy. Good luck - here for a hand hold or advice if you need it.

baby410 Sun 01-Oct-17 08:18:01

We had a similar situation at our 20 week scan and unfortunately we're no further forward now and baby is due this week. The right side of our babies heart is enlarged but they haven't been able to find a cause, so will need to wait until baby is born for a diagnosis.
I do have a friend who was told that baby only had 3 chambers at the 20 week scans, but when scanned by specialists it was all perfect. The heart is so small at that point it must be difficult to see all the tiny details.
I hope they will be able to offer reassurance on Tuesday x

lookatthemoon Sun 01-Oct-17 21:57:53

Thanks for the handhold Chinny - and so sorry for your loss and that you had to go through that. Again, it is good to hear about going on to have heart healthy babies. I am swinging between preparing myself to say goodbye and being totally calm and hopeful.

Baby410 - how utterly scary for you. As I'm only at the start of this journey I can only have a small appreciation of what you feel. Good luck in the next couple of weeks, I hope you have the world's most boring and unremarkable birth and that baby ends up totally healthy or with something very treatable. Fx for us all this week x

Chinnychinnychinnychib Mon 02-Oct-17 21:38:48

Good luck tomorrow x

maxiflump1 Tue 03-Oct-17 06:44:24

Good luck for today look. We are all thinking about you. flowers

ButtMuncher Tue 03-Oct-17 06:49:00

No advice but good luck for today OP flowers

Logans Tue 03-Oct-17 06:49:16

flowers
Thinking of you & hoping for the best.

wtffgs Tue 03-Oct-17 06:51:54

Good luck for today flowers

TheWitchwithNoName Tue 03-Oct-17 06:54:36

Good luck today OP flowers

UnbornMortificado Tue 03-Oct-17 07:03:06

Good luck today OP flowers

baby410 Tue 03-Oct-17 07:05:03

Thanks OP. Good luck today xx

Graceflorrick Tue 03-Oct-17 07:07:40

Thinking of you OP.

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