Prenatal Diagnosis of Aortopulmonary Window: A Case Series and Literature Review

J Ultrasound Med. 2017 Aug;36(8):1733-1738. doi: 10.7863/ultra.16.08025. Epub 2017 Apr 10.


Aortopulmonary window (APW) is a rare congenital heart defect, characterized by a connection between the ascending aorta and the pulmonary trunk before bifurcation. Prenatal diagnosis of APW is essential, as a surgical correction early after birth is required in most cases to prevent congestive heart failure secondary to high pulmonary blood flow. We report a series of three cases of APW that were detected by prenatal echocardiography. The key feature of diagnosis is demonstration of connection between the pulmonary artery and the aorta above the level of the two semilunar valves. Based on our cases and literature review, diagnostic clues for prenatal diagnosis of APW are summarized and proposed.

Keywords: aortopulmonary window; cardiac defects; congenital; fetal echocardiography; prenatal diagnosis.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Abortion, Eugenic
  • Adult
  • Aorta / diagnostic imaging
  • Aorta / embryology
  • Aortopulmonary Septal Defect / diagnostic imaging*
  • Echocardiography / methods
  • Fatal Outcome
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Pregnancy
  • Pulmonary Artery / diagnostic imaging
  • Pulmonary Artery / embryology
  • Ultrasonography, Prenatal / methods*