WASHINGTON (April 13, 2016)– The Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine released a statement on the use of ultrasound screening for fetal microcephaly following Zika virus exposure.
Microcephaly is a condition in which the size of the head is smaller than expected for age. This condition in fetuses and infants has been associated with the recent outbreak of Zika virus. Due to this association, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine have suggested ultrasound evaluation to measure the baby's head in pregnant women who have been infected or potentially exposed. Diagnosis of microcephaly by ultrasound is not always straightforward and can be complex. The Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine provided recommendations on how to interpret the findings, including when to perform follow up ultrasound, as well as a table of values at each week of pregnancy that would define the lower limit of normal. The goal is to provide the tools to health care providers to counsel women who may have been exposed to the Zika virus. The Society for Maternal-Fetal will continue to assist clinicians in tackling this new health threat.
For more information on the Society of Maternal-Fetal Medicine's recommendations and the Zika virus, go to http://www.smfm.org/education/zika or visit SMFM's publications http://www.smfm.org/publications.
The Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (est. 1977) is the premiere membership organization for obstetricians/gynecologists who have additional formal education and training in maternal-fetal medicine. The society is devoted to reducing high-risk pregnancy complications by sharing expertise through continuing education to its 2,000 members on the latest pregnancy assessment and treatment methods. It also serves as an advocate for improving public policy, and expanding research funding and opportunities for maternal-fetal medicine. The group hosts an annual meeting in which groundbreaking new ideas and research in the area of maternal-fetal medicine are shared and discussed. For more information visit http://www.smfm.org.