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Prenat Diagn. 1996 Sep;16(9):866-9.

Fetal hepatic necrosis following blood sampling from the intrahepatic vein.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, NE1 4LP, U.K.


Previous reports have suggested that fetal blood sampling from the intrahepatic vein is not associated with significant fetal hepatic injury. We report a case of fetal liver necrosis occurring 24 h following blood sampling from the intrahepatic vein of a fetus with severe growth retardation at 34 weeks. The placenta was in a posterior position, precluding either blood sampling from the placental insertion or placental biopsy. Fetal death occurred in utero within 24 h of the procedure, which was carried out by an experienced operator. At post-mortem the liver appeared normally formed, but the right lobe was diffusely congested, with a well-defined demarcation line between the right and left lobes. Liver histology revealed extensive recent haemorrhagic necrosis of the right lobe.

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