Fetal Autopsy

What is Fetal Autopsy?

A fetal autopsy includes an examination of the internal & external body parts after the demise of a fetus due to an elective termination of pregnancy or health anomalies. This may often involve extraction of small pieces of tissues for further laboratory examination involving genetic or infectious studies testing. For fetuses and newborns, the examination of the Placenta (Placenta-Scope- Read more) is usually part of the autopsy.

Pregnancy loss or having to go through a termination owing to fetal anomalies can be an emotionally taxing experience for couples. The best way to prevent such an incident from recurring is to find out its root cause. This is where a fetal significance. autopsy carries great

A fetal autopsy is the examination of a demised fetus following a spontaneous or missed miscarriage. It should also be conducted following the termination of a pregnancy for fetal abnormality to consequently provide a specific diagnosis.

Components of Fetal Autopsy

1: Informed Consent

2: Clinical history & investigations in pregnancy

3: Morphometry

4: Clinical Photographs

5: Radiography

6: External examination

7: Dissection

8: Tissue sampling for histopathology

9: Final report

10: Counselling and further management

When is a Fetal Autopsy Recommended?

According to a study published in the Journal Of Laboratory Physicians and as per the guidelines provided in Child Health Division (Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India), a fetal autopsy is recommended in the following scenarios.

Fetal Autopsy is Essential

Congenital malformations

Recurrent fetal death

Hydrops fetalis – Abnormal accumulation of fluid in fetal compartments

Intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR). where no cause is detectable

Suspected infections

Fetal Autopsy is Desirable

Termination of pregnancy due to congenital anomalies

Intrauterine fetal death (IUFD)

Inevitable abortion

Termination due to increased risk of chromosomal anomalies

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