Should You Have a Fetoscopy?

FetoscopyThere are many things to be aware of if you are pregnant or you want to get pregnant. Understanding what a fetoscopy is, why you might need one and the risks involved should be something you invest your time in. This procedure can allow you to be more informed about the health of your unborn baby.

What is a Fetoscopy?

The procedure called a fetoscopy is performed so that your doctor can get a look at your baby while it is still residing in the womb. Doctors use a tool called a fetoscope which is a very thin flexible device which enters a woman’s uterus through a small surgical incision in the wall of the abdomen. An ultrasound assists the attending doctor to observe the fetoscope inside the uterus to make sure that no harm is done to the baby at all. This procedure is usually done when the placenta and your baby have appropriately developed so that your doctor can evaluate and diagnose any problems. This Is usually around the eighteenth week of pregnancy.

There are Many Reasons a Fetoscopy is Performed

A fetoscopy can be performed to get a variety of information about your unborn fetus. This procedure allows doctors to collect samples of blood from the umbilical cord, so that they can be tested thoroughly to find out if your baby is at risk for diseases like sickle cell anemia, or perhaps hemophilia. A fetoscopy allows for tissue samples to be collected from your baby. They will be able to check the samples for inherited diseases your child may be tainted by. This procedure will also give your health care provider to assess the possibility of some birth defects or rule them out. Spina bifida is an example of this.

There are many things to be aware of if you are pregnant or you want to get pregnant. Understanding what a fetoscopy is, why you might need one and the risks involved should be something you invest your time in.

Risks Involved With a Fetoscopy

The fetoscopy is usually only performed if there is a significant risk of a defect. You would know this from looking at your family history, and deciding that the risk of birth defect or disease is significantly possible. As with any medical procedure there are risks involved in having a fetoscopy. The risk involves both the child and the mother. The risk of a miscarriage is significantly increased. Also both mother and child are significantly susceptible to infection, or excessive bleeding. There could also be excessive leakage of amniotic fluid.

If you have deemed it necessary to have a fetoscopy procedure done you will find out a lot of information. Your medical care provider will monitor the heart rate of the fetus. You will be laying on a table with your lower body slightly elevated which will allow the muscles of your abdomen to relax. A local anesthetic will be applied to the site an incision will be made to allow the insertion of the fetoscope. The entire procedure should take somewhere between one to two hours. Although there are many risks involved having the fetoscopy, it can help your prepare appropriately for a possible problem with a birth, or it can allow you to have peace of mind that everything is alright with your baby.