Helping you understand scary (but often harmless) pregnancy ultrasound findings

Echogenic intracardiac focusHeart problems are the most common congenital birth defects, and it’s easy to panic when something unusual is detected on ultrasound. But echogenic intracardiac focus (EIF) is almost never something to worry about. It shows up as a bright spot on the heart in imaging, and it’s thought to be a microcalcification on the heart muscle.

As many as 5% of pregnancies experience EIF. It is so typical in infants of Asian descent that it cannot even be used as a marker for their ethnicity. So, when we notice a bright spot, we inquire about the parents’ racial backgrounds. Similar to choroid plexus cysts, if this marker is found along with other ultrasound concerns or a higher-than-usual risk for Down syndrome or trisomy 13 on a prenatal screen, it may point to a chromosomal condition. Once more, if it’s an isolated finding, we won’t be concerned. Heart function is unaffected by EIF before or after birth, and follow-up testing is almost never necessary. All of these results are even less significant if a patient has previously undergone an amniocentesis, chorionic villus sampling (CVS), or even a cell-free fetal DNA screen.

What kind of information can you learn from this test?

An ultrasound’s results can be classified as either normal or abnormal.

  • The fetus is the right size for its age.
  • The placenta is the expected size and does not cover the cervix.
  • There is enough amniotic fluid in the uterus.
  • No birth defects can be seen.
  • The fetus is small or large for its age.
  • The placenta covers the cervix.
  • There is too much or too little amniotic fluid in the uterus.
  • The fetus may have a birth defect.
  • This 17-week-old fetus underwent a routine ultrasound. Pregnant women may view this type of image on the ultrasound screen or have it printed for them by the technician. The crosshair is pointing at the left ankle and the head is positioned to the right. In the middle of the screen, the left arm and leg are discernible.

    This 30-week ultrasound of the umbilical cord is a typical color Doppler scan. The cord is the colored region in the center of the screen, and the various blood vessels are depicted by various colors there. Normally, the cord has two arteries and one vein, making three vessels total. The placenta is attached to the umbilical cord and is situated in the middle left of the

    Around nine to thirteen weeks of pregnancy, some facilities are now performing an ultrasound for pregnancy called a nuchal translucency screening test. This examination is carried out to check for any indications of Down syndrome or other issues in the growing baby. In order to improve the accuracy of results, this test is frequently combined with blood tests.

    This 19-week-old fetus underwent a routine ultrasound. Many medical professionals like to measure the fetus to confirm its size and check for any abnormalities. This ultrasound is of an abdominal measurement. The cross hairs and dotted lines show a cross-section of the abdomen, and they represent the measurements.

    At 17 weeks gestation, the fetus underwent a routine ultrasound. In the center of the screen is the fetal face. The placenta, which appears as a mound in the ultrasound’s left corner, is where the head is tipped leftward. There are two visible eyes, and the white portion inside each eye is the lens. The mouth and other facial features are also discernible, including the nose.


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