Second-trimester hydrops fetalis in pregnancies affected by homozygous alpha-thalassaemia-1

Prenat Diagn. 1997 Mar;17(3):267-9. doi: 10.1002/(sici)1097-0223(199703)17:3<267::aid-pd54>3.0.co;2-#.

Abstract

Homozygous alpha-thalassaemia-1 is the commonest cause of hydrops fetalis in South-East Asia. Ultrasonographic features of hydrops fetalis were said to be evident only after 20 weeks of gestation. We studied 111 pregnancies at risk of homozygous alpha-thalassaemia-1 at 12-14 gestational weeks and 101 pregnancies at 17-18 weeks by abdominal ultrasound examination. Ultrasonographic features of hydrops fetalis were seen in 3 out of 44 pregnancies affected by homozygous alpha-thalassaemia-1 at 12-14 weeks [7 per cent; 95 per cent confidence interval (CI) 1-19 per cent] and in 7 out of 21 affected pregnancies at 17-18 weeks (33 per cent; 95 per cent CI 15-57 per cent). In conclusion, homozygous alpha-thalassaemia-1 can cause hydrops fetalis in the early second trimester. It should constitute one of the differential diagnoses in the work-up of second-trimester hydrops fetalis.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Homozygote
  • Humans
  • Hydrops Fetalis / diagnostic imaging
  • Hydrops Fetalis / etiology*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Hematologic* / diagnostic imaging
  • Pregnancy Trimester, First
  • Pregnancy Trimester, Second
  • Prospective Studies
  • Ultrasonography
  • alpha-Thalassemia / complications*
  • alpha-Thalassemia / diagnostic imaging
  • alpha-Thalassemia / embryology
  • alpha-Thalassemia / genetics