Fetal hydrops: A systematic approach for the pathologist

Sarah K. Hartman, Josefine Heim-hall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Hydrops fetalis is identified clinically by antenatal ultrasound or upon delivery. It comes to the surgical pathologist's attention through receipt of an abnormal placenta or through request for perinatal autopsy. Abnormal fluid accumulation within multiple fetal body sites defines hydrops fetalis. Unfortunately, this clinical finding is common to a large variety and number of etiologies, and in approximately 14% to 32% of cases of fetal loss, no specific cause is identified. Etiologies may overlap among different categories but are addressed here as immune hemolysis, structural abnormalities, chromosomal/syndromes, nonimmune anemias, infection, and neoplasia. Here, we review both the pathophysiology of immune and nonimmune hydrops fetalis and suggest a systematic approach to fetal and placental autopsy to mitigate the difficulty of a comprehensive workup and identify a cause of fetal instability or loss.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)179-185
Number of pages7
JournalPathology Case Reviews
Volume16
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2011

Fingerprint

Hydrops Fetalis
Autopsy
Hemolysis
Chromosome Aberrations
Placenta
Anemia
Pathologists
Infection
Neoplasms

Keywords

  • alloimmunization
  • Fetal hydrops
  • NIHF
  • nonimmune hydrops fetalis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine

Cite this

Fetal hydrops : A systematic approach for the pathologist. / Hartman, Sarah K.; Heim-hall, Josefine.

In: Pathology Case Reviews, Vol. 16, No. 5, 09.2011, p. 179-185.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Hartman, Sarah K. ; Heim-hall, Josefine. / Fetal hydrops : A systematic approach for the pathologist. In: Pathology Case Reviews. 2011 ; Vol. 16, No. 5. pp. 179-185.
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