Most pregnancies are uncomplicated, but some pregnancies may require additional care for either the mother or her unborn baby from a specialist fetal medicine team. Patients are referred to the FM team by midwives, obstetricians and GPs. Patients can also self-refer if previously known to Fetal Medicine Team.
Dr Helen Russell and Dr Nithiya Palaniappan
Specialist fetal medicine midwives - Sharon Brown and Pamela Niven.
- Follow-up of increased risk results of 1st and 2nd trimester screening for Down’s syndrome.
- Detailed ultrasound scanning for diagnosis and confirmation of fetal abnormality.
- Diagnostic testing: we offer referral to Edinburgh in early pregnancy for chorionic villus sampling, or amniocentesis can be performed here in Fife.
- Fetal cardiac (heart) ultrasound screening and diagnosis for fetal heart abnormalities.
- Investigation and management of suspected or known fetal abnormality.
- Pre-pregnancy counselling.
- Care of women who have had a previous poor pregnancy outcome or previous diagnosis of an abnormality.
- Monitoring of Rhesus disease/alloimmunisation (red blood cell antibodies).
- Combined fetal medicine/genetics clinic with input from Professor Mary Porteous, Clinical Genetics and Dr Margaret Evans, Fetal Pathology.
At times we may need to refer women to other larger fetal medicine centres in Edinburgh, Glasgow or Birmingham for an opinion.
We participate in a study investigating the use of MRI scanning in the enhanced diagnosis of fetal brain abnormalities (MERIDIAN study) and as such offer some patients an MRI scan in Sheffield.
What happens at an appointment?
The team will explain why you have been referred to fetal medicine and counsel you on the options available for your pregnancy. The appointment will usually involve a detailed specialist ultrasound scan of your pregnancy. Pregnancy choices, care plan and any follow-up can then be discussed between you and the team.