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Prenat Diagn. 2008 Jul;28(7):619-25. doi: 10.1002/pd.1968.

In utero therapy for fetal thoracic abnormalities.

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Center for Fetal Diagnosis and Treatment, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.


Fetal thoracic lung anomalies are rare. The specific diagnosis can be made by utilizing ultrasound, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and Doppler studies. Perinatal surveillance is required for large lesions and mediastinal shift regardless of the pathological diagnosis. These can cause physiological changes in the cardiovascular system with resulting hydrops. In utero therapies are variable but with no large randomized trials to compare risks and benefits. In most cases of fetal lung lesions, continued observation with postnatal therapy is the outcome. When fetal hydrops is present or impending, in utero fetal therapy is required to try to reverse that pathological course associated with fetal or neonatal death. Maternal morbidity is increased with the development of MIRROR syndrome following the presence of long-standing fetal hydrops and possible surgical procedures.

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