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Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. 2007 Feb;29(2):170-7.

OEIS complex: prenatal ultrasound and autopsy findings.

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  • 1The Department of Human Genetics, Hadassah Medical Center, The Hebrew University, Jerusalem, Israel.



To describe prenatal ultrasound and autopsy findings in fetuses with OEIS (omphalocele, bladder exstrophy, imperforate anus, spina bifida) complex.


This was a retrospective study of the nine cases with OEIS complex diagnosed at our center using detailed fetal ultrasound during the last 10 years. We summarized the fetal ultrasound findings that led to the diagnosis and compared them with the autopsy results.


All affected fetuses were diagnosed using detailed fetal ultrasound after 16 weeks' gestation. The main prenatal findings were omphalocele, skin-covered lumbosacral neural tube defect, non-visualized bladder and limb defects. Prenatal sonography failed to detect the abnormal genitalia, bladder exstrophy and anal atresia. All cases had abnormalities in a 'diaper distribution', which helped in making the prenatal diagnosis. Eight of the nine couples chose to terminate the pregnancies following multidisciplinary counseling. The pregnancy that was continued was a case with dizygotic twins discordant for OEIS, and the affected fetus died in utero.


The combination of the following ultrasound findings: ventral wall defect, spinal defect and a non-visualized bladder with or without limb defects, are characteristic of OEIS complex. Diagnosis can be made with confidence as early as 16 weeks' gestation, although earlier diagnosis may be possible.

Copyright 2007 ISUOG. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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