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What is the purpose of fetal MR in pregnant women?
Acıbadem Kozyatağı Hospital Radiology Specialist Ümit Özcan: Fetal MR is used for further and detailed examination when any pathological findings in the mother or baby are detected during ultrasonographic examination. MRI examination can be performed for the baby as well as it can be used safely to illuminate maternal problems during pregnancy.
What are the mother's problems?
Exp. Dr. Ümit Özcan: MR is used as a problem solver in cases where the diagnosis is not confirmed by ultrasonography. These problems include acute appendicitis, kidney stones, ovarian cysts, hemorrhages, which cause abdominal pain in the mother. MRI is also used for diagnosis in patients who have had previous cesarean section and therefore have problems in their second pregnancy, fibroids that may cause problems during pregnancy or placental pathologies.
What are the reasons for the baby?
Exp. Dr. Özcan: The most common use of fetal MRI among the causes of infant is the central nervous system diseases of the fetus. Brain or spine problems detected in the baby during pregnancy follow-up can be considered limited by ultrasonography. The detailed anatomical structure of the brain, the development of brain folds and layers, developmental disorders of the spine are shown to be superior to ultrasonography by fetal MRI. Fetal MR imaging provides additional information on ultrasonography and changes the clinical approach in pathologies such as ventriculomegaly, enlarged brain cavities, womb infections, hereditary brain diseases and tumoral masses. Fetal MRI may show changes that cannot be demonstrated by fetal MR in detecting problems in twin pregnancies, such as bleeding in the infant brain and bleeding in the brain parenchyma. Ultrasonography may adversely affect the diagnosis of the baby's position of admission or the amount of water in the womb. In fetal MRI, these are not a problem; No matter which position the baby is, the image can be taken very comfortably. It can be used for MR planning in the womb or in fetuses requiring surgical intervention immediately after birth. Fetal MRI is used not only for diseases of the central nervous system but also for evaluating the structures of the fetus such as lung, abdominal cavity and musculoskeletal system. When there is a problem with the diaphragm of babies, for example, when the organs in the abdomen move to the lung, Fetal MRI is used in lung masses to evaluate lung volume and development. When evaluating the structures of the baby's abdomen, it is possible to distinguish urinary tract, liver, gall bladder development, ovarian problems in girls, or tumors that may occur with Fetal MR. We can use MR not only for the pathologies of the baby, but also for the pathologies of the placenta known as the infant's spouse.
During which period of pregnancy is fetal MR possible?
Exp. Dr. Özcan: Fetal MRI is not used in the first trimester of pregnancy because there is not enough data yet. In fact, the majority of our patients, fetuses over 24 weeks are cases. Fetal MRI performed at advanced gestational week may even affect the choice of the hospital where the delivery will take place. The mother may be referred to a specialized hospital for emergency postnatal conditions.
Are any drugs given to the mother during fetal MRI?
Exp. Dr. Özcan: We do not need to give any drugs to the mother or baby for fetal MRI applications. While examining the MR device in our hospital, the mother's head does not enter the device, and even our patients who are afraid of going to MRI can easily have a fetal MRI examination. If the mother can not lie on her back can be shot by tilting the side. Fetal MRI takes about 20-30 minutes in total.
What is the difference between ultrasound and fetal MR?
Exp. Dr. Özcan: Ultrasound produces an image using sound waves, Fetal MRI produces images in the magnetic field. Fetal MRI does not contain any radiation. In the past, we could use ultrasonography for maternal and fetus health and had to take X-rays when needed. The most feared expectant mothers are that the baby receives radiation during the examination, but the examination on fetal MRI does not contain any radiation.
Should every pregnant get a fetal MRI?
Exp. Dr. Özcan: Fetal MRI is not a screening method, so all pregnant women do not need to have it. Only fetuses that are deemed necessary as a result of doctors' evaluation are referred to MRI. Diseases that do not obtain sufficient information as a result of ultrasonography, fetuses suspected of anomalies, cases with a family history but not diagnosed should be evaluated with MRI.
Does your mother need to make any preparations before entering MRI?
Exp. Dr. Özcan: The patient does not need to make any preparations before he arrives. Pregnant mothers can come directly to Fetal MRI examination after their physicians requesting MRI.