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Aneurysms of the fetal arterial duct are usually benign

Cardiol Young. 2022 Jun 22:1-6. doi: 10.1017/S1047951122001925. Online ahead of print.


INTRODUCTION: Fetal arterial duct aneurysm, saccular, or fusiform enlargement of the arterial duct affect > 8% of pregnancies. It is uncommonly associated with serious sequelae postnatally, including thromboembolic events such as stroke and left pulmonary artery obstruction, rupture with demise, and vocal cord compression. Risk factors include maternal diabetes, late maternal age, maternal blood type A, large size for gestational age, and connective tissue disorders. The clinical importance remains unknown, making it difficult to determine how to monitor this finding postnatally.

METHODS: This is a retrospective echocardiogram study assessing the outcomes of fetally diagnosed arterial duct aneurysm. Images and records were reviewed to confirm the diagnosis and assess risk factors and outcomes. Descriptive statistics were performed.

RESULTS: Fifty-three affected fetuses were identified. The median gestational age at diagnosis was 34.9 weeks (IQR 32.6, 36.6). The median maternal age was 31 years (IQR 27.3-34.1). Eight (15%) had maternal diabetes. The most common blood type was type O. The median maximal dimension of the aneurysm was 7.6 mm (IQR 6.1, 8.7). The aortic end was the maximal dimension in 67.9%. Median postnatal follow-up period was 76 days (IQR 7.5, 368). No patients sustained postnatal demise related to the duct, rupture of the ductal aneurysm, cerebral infarction, or other sequelae. No newborn had associated connective tissue disorders. No patients underwent ductal intervention.

CONCLUSION: In our experience, no adverse outcomes related to the ductal aneurysm were identified. This should be considered when counselling families about the need for postnatal follow-up.

PMID:35730324 | DOI:10.1017/S1047951122001925

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