Table of Contents
ISRN Obstetrics and Gynecology
Volume 2012, Article ID 496935, 7 pages
Clinical Study

Routine Use of Color Doppler in Fetal Heart Scanning in a Low-Risk Population

1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Stavanger University Hospital, N-4068 Stavanger, Norway
2Department of Pediatrics, Stavanger University Hospital, N-4068 Stavanger, Norway
3Department of Pathology, Stavanger University Hospital, N-4068 Stavanger, Norway

Received 14 February 2012; Accepted 19 March 2012

Academic Editors: K. Chan and E. Cosmi

Copyright © 2012 Torbjørn Moe Eggebø et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objectives. To investigate the detection rate of major fetal heart defects in a low-risk population implementing routine use of color Doppler. Material and Methods. In a prospective observational study, all women undergoing fetal heart scanning (including 6781 routine examinations in the second trimester) during a three-year period were included. First a gray-scale scanning was performed including assessment of the four-chamber view and the great vessels. Thereafter three cross-sectional planes through the fetal thorax were assessed with color Doppler. Results. Thirty-nine fetuses had major heart defects, and 26 (67%) were prenatally detected. In 9 / 2 6 (35%) of cases the main ultrasound finding was related to the use of color Doppler. The survival rate of live born children was 91%. Conclusions. Routine use of color Doppler in fetal heart scanning in a low-risk population may be helpful in the detection of major heart defects; however, still severe malformations were missed prenatally.