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Foetal Medicine: What is it and why it matters?

Maternal Foetal Medicine specialists are critical to managing high-risk pregnancies.

Recent advances in maternal and Foetal medicine have taken many pregnancies to term and improved the well-being of preterm babies as well as twin/triplet pregnancies. In the wake of the same, IVI Middle East Abu Dhabi started its IVI Fetal Medical Centre to enhance foetal care in the UAE and the region. IVI Fetal emphasises that foetal medicine is different from the typical gynaecological care during pregnancy.

According to Dr. Desislava, Lead, Fetal Medicine, IVI Fetal Clinic, which is a part of the IVI Fertility clinics, it is imperative to educate couples about the vital role of maternal foetal medicine (MFM) specialist in achieving a healthy pregnancy. This is especially true for women who are categorised as high pregnancies because of their health condition, multiple pregnancies or advanced age, among others. Couples who have an increased risk of chromosomal and genetic anomalies are also considered high risk.

“Patients often need clarity on Foetal Medicine. It is an advanced area of medicine that addresses the specific and unique health concerns of expectant mothers who have health issues, including high blood pressure, bleeding, and multiple miscarriages, and their unborn babies. Pregnant women with high-risk pregnancies are going to immensely benefit if they also seek the counsel and services of Foetal specialists. Timely and accurate foetal screening and diagnosis allow doctors to meet the specific and unique needs of the babies while they are still in the womb,” Dr. Desislava said.

Risk management options

Babies who were younger than 24 weeks’ gestation (or under 500g) had low survival rates. However, the longer the babies stay in the womb, the better the chance of survival they have. This is where the foetal medicine centre comes in, offering specialised, individualised care for the mother and the baby.

At the IVI Fetal Medical Centre, Abu Dhabi the team of doctors use modern technologies to perform in-depth screening and diagnosis in order to prevent complications and other medical concerns with the fetus that may arise in high/low-risk pregnancies. After the risk assessment and analysis, appropriate risk management options and the right treatment path are suggested to patients.

“Foetal specialists prioritise the health and safety of mothers carrying a foetus with a congenital anomaly, among other concerns, by providing specialised management plan,” added Dr Desislava.

With advances in pregnancy and childbearing growing sharply, Foetal medicine is a solution that focuses on managing the health concerns of the mother and foetus prior to, during, and shortly after pregnancy, especially those undergoing high-risk or problematic pregnancies.

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