Pediatric Heart Expert Forum
Small left ventricle in fetus
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Questions in this forum are answered by pediatric cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons and anesthesiologists from The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. This forum is for questions and support about pediatric heart problems, symptoms and topics such as heart murmurs, palpitations, fainting, chest pain, congenital heart defects (including management and intervention), fetal cardiology, adult congenital cardiology, arrhythmias and pre-participation athletic screening.

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Small left ventricle in fetus

I had my ultrasound done last week at 19 wks 3 days pregnant. The tech said she only got one decent pic of babies left ventricle but couldn't duplicate it and said either bad positioning it his ventricle is small. My doc called me prompt Te next morning yo advise me to schedule with a highrisk sspecialist within 2-3 weeks when baby is bigger so they can look again. I'm scared and unsure what's going on. Could it gave been bad positioning and his size, he weighed 10 oz, the made it hard or is it likely it's small and they are sending me to a specialist for confirmation? I'm not getting many answers so far and I'm very worried.
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Unfortunately, the answer could be either.  It may be that the left sided ventricle (pumping chamber) looked small because of the position of the baby, OR it could really be small.  Until another specialist looks, you will not know for sure.  Obviously if the next images show a normal size left ventricle, then it was a positional issue.  However, if the left ventricle still looks small, then the baby likely has congenital heart disease (CHD), In the general population, CHD is much more common than people realize, and some heart abnormality it seen in roughly 1 in 100 babies.  If the left ventricle is very small, then this could be a form of hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS),.  On the other hand if there is only a mild discrepancy in size between the left and right pulmping chambers, then there can be other explanations.  You should go ahead and schedule a fetal echocardiogram within the next 1-2 weeks, or as soon as you can get one.  Good information can be obtained at 18-19 weeks.  It is important to get this information early in the pregnancy so you can learn about management and prognosis if this is a congenital heart problem.   Good luck.
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