Prenatal detection of aortic coarctation in a well-organized screening setting: Are we there yet?

Fleur Zwanenburg, Arend D J Ten Harkel, Maartje C Snoep, Bo B Bet, Ingeborg H Linskens, Ingmar Knobbe, Eva Pajkrt, Nico A Blom, Sally-Ann B Clur, Monique C Haak

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Objective: We aimed to assess current prenatal detection rate (DR) of aortic coarctation (CoA) and its impact on neonatal outcome in the Netherlands to evaluate the efficacy of the Dutch screening protocol in which the cardiac four-chamber view, outflow tracts and three-vessel view are compulsory. Methods: All prenatally and postnatally diagnosed CoA cases between 2012 and 2021 were extracted from our PRECOR-registry. Annual DRs were calculated with a focus on the trend over time and attributing factors for detection. Postnatal outcome was compared between prenatally detected and undetected cases. Results: 49/116 cases (42.2%) were detected prenatally. A higher chance of detection was found for cases with extracardiac malformations (71.4%; p = 0.001) and the more severe cases with an aortic arch hypoplasia and/or ventricular septal defect (63.2%; p = 0.001). Time-trend analysis showed no improvement in DR over time (p = 0.33). Undetected cases presented with acute circulatory shock in 20.9% and were more likely to have severe lactic acidosis (p = 0.02) and impaired cardiac function (p < 0.001) before surgery. Conclusion: Even in a well-organized screening program, the DR of CoA still requires improvement, especially in isolated cases. The increased risk of severe lactic acidosis in undetected cases stresses the need for urgent additions to the current screening program, such as implementation of the three-vessel trachea view and measurement of outflow tracts.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPrenatal diagnosis
Early online date22 Dec 2022
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 22 Dec 2022

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