Pediatric Heart Expert Forum
fetal Irregular heart beat
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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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fetal Irregular heart beat

Hi,

I am 33 weeks pregnant and my baby has been diagnosed with irregular heartbeats. The heartbeat is normal for about 4 seconds, and the it misses beats for about 2 seconds then back to normal. This is a pattern and has been noticed for a week now. Everything else is ok, including the developement of the heart. Doctors are suggesting premature birth.
Please advice as we are in a situation and not sure how to proceed.
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773637_tn?1327450515
Dear Meloman,

Without seeing your baby's heart rhythm or cardiac anatomy, I cannot say for sure.  However, if the anatomy and function of your baby's heart is normal, and there is no sustained abnormal heartbeats (arrhythmias), then there is not an indication for premature delivery.  We often see early heartbeats in fetuses, typically in the second trimester.  These then resolve by the third trimester, but they can also persist into the newborn time period.  However, these are typically benign and do not cause any problems.
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773637_tn?1327450515
Jeffrey R Boris, M.D.Blank
The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Philadelphia, PA
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