What does fetal autopsy unmask in oligohydramnios?

Shalini S. Nayak, Anju Shukla, Sreelakshmi Kodandapani, Prashanth K. Adiga, Katta M. Girisha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Objective: We aimed to determine the value of autopsy in fetuses with antenatally diagnosed oligohydramnios.Patients and methods: We evaluated all fetal losses over a period of 6.5 years. Those with oligohydramnios on antenatal scan were critically analyzed. Oligohydramnios was defined as amniotic fluid index of less than five objectively or as an obvious lack of liquor at subjective assessment. A detailed postmortem examination was carried out in all the fetuses after obtaining an informed consent.Results: Fetal autopsy was conducted in 255 cases. Fifty-five (21.5%) fetuses were diagnosed to have oligohydramnios on antenatal ultrasonography. On analysis of antenatal causes of oligohydramnios, maternal/placental factors were noted in 18%, ultrasound findings known to affect amniotic fluid in 27% while cause remained unidentified in 54.5% of cases. On autopsy, fetal malformations were noted in 61.8% cases, intrauterine growth retardation in 21.8% fetuses and no obvious malformations in 16.3% fetuses. Renal anomalies were noted in 40% cases and non-renal malformations in 21.8% cases.Conclusion: The postmortem examination helped us to identify the cause of fetal loss in 46 (83.6%) fetuses with antenatal oligohydramnios. A working diagnosis could not have been established without autopsy in 19 (34.5%) cases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2347-2351
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - 17-07-2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology


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