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Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. 2006 May;27(5):574-9.

Three-dimensional ultrasound in the prenatal diagnosis of cleidocranial dysplasia associated with B-cell immunodeficiency.

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Perinatology Research Branch, NICHD, NIH, DHHS, Detroit, Michigan 48201, USA.


A patient with a singleton pregnancy was referred for three-dimensional ultrasonography (3DUS) at 18 + 3 weeks for suspected hypomineralization of the skull bones and absence of the nasal bones. Three-dimensional rendered images of the fetal skull revealed widening of the coronal sutures, absence of the squamous portion of the temporal bone, and absence of the occipital bone, except for two areas of ossification. In addition, a fractured right clavicle was identified. The remainder of the fetal anatomy was normal and biometry was appropriate for gestational age. Genetic amniocentesis revealed a 46,XX fetal karyotype. Family history was positive for a 5-year-old sibling with an open anterior fontanelle. Cleidocranial dysplasia was suspected. A female neonate was delivered by elective repeat Cesarean section at 40 + 3 weeks of gestation without complications and discharged home 3 days after delivery. Prenatal diagnosis was confirmed by physical and radiological evaluation. The infant died at 8 weeks of age due to respiratory syncytial virus pneumonia secondary to B-cell deficiency. RUNX2 mutations were not detected by molecular analysis. There are three relevant aspects to this case: (1) clear visualization of the widened fontanelles and hypomineralized occipital bones was possible with the use of 3DUS; (2) a clavicular fracture was identified in utero with combined high-resolution two-dimensional and 3DUS; and (3) although absence of the nasal bones is most commonly observed in fetuses with chromosomal disorders (e.g. trisomy 21 and trisomy 18), a careful examination of the skeleton should be considered in fetuses with absent nasal bones and a normal karyotype.

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