Fetal echocardiography (echo) uses sound waves to check the heart of your developing baby.
Fetal echo can help find heart defects before birth. If a heart problem can be found early, the the more likely treatment will work. This is because:
Healthcare providers recommend fetal echo in these cases:
If you have risk factors such as a family history of heart problems, fetal echoes are often done in the second trimester of pregnancy. This is at about 18 to 24 weeks.
A specially trained pediatric cardiologist, maternal-fetal specialist, obstetrician, or radiologist does fetal echo. In general, the steps include:
Your healthcare provider will look at the results. He or she may order more tests or procedures. They may include: