Hydrops Fetalis | Diagnosis & Treatment

How is hydrops fetalis diagnosed?

Hydrops fetalis can be diagnosed during pregnancy or after the baby is born through one of the following tests:

How is hydrops fetalis treated?

Treatment of hydrops fetalis depends on its cause. During pregnancy, hydrops fetalis is treatable only in certain situations. After birth, treatment may include:

  • help for difficulty breathing using extra oxygen or a mechanical breathing machine
  • removal of excessive fluid from spaces around the lungs and abdomen using a needle
  • medications to help the kidneys remove excess fluid

What is the long-term outlook for hydrops fetalis?

The severe swelling that occurs with hydrops can overtake a baby’s organ systems. About half of unborn babies with hydrops do not survive. For babies born with hydrops, survival often depends on the cause of the disease and its treatment.