Original Research

Foetal magnetic resonance imaging: A necessity or adjunct? A modality comparison of in-utero ultrasound and ultrafast foetal magnetic resonance imaging

Sunaina Ramdass, Sumaiya Adam, Zarina Lockhat, Andries Masenge, Farhana E. Suleman
South African Journal of Radiology | Vol 25, No 1 | a2010 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajr.v25i1.2010 | © 2021 Sunaina Ramdass, Sumaiya Adam, Zarina Lockhat, Andries Masenge, Farhana E. Suleman | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 04 October 2020 | Published: 19 March 2021

About the author(s)

Sunaina Ramdass, Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Steve Biko Academic Hospital, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa
Sumaiya Adam, Department of Foeto-maternal Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, Steve Biko Academic Hospital, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa
Zarina Lockhat, Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Steve Biko Academic Hospital, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa
Andries Masenge, Department of Biostatistics, Faculty of Statistics, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa
Farhana E. Suleman, Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Steve Biko Academic Hospital, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa


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Abstract

Background: Congenital anomalies occur in approximately 2% of newborns, resulting in severe medical, physical and social disabilities. Managing clinicians, therefore, require more confidence in their diagnosis and prognostic accuracy before appropriately counselling the parents regarding termination of pregnancy.

Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate the role of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) following the diagnosis of foetal anomalies at a foetomaternal unit of a tertiary South African institution.

Methods: Eighty-eight pregnant women in their late second/third trimester who underwent both an ultrasound (US) at the foetomaternal unit and foetal MRI at the Radiology Department from 01 July 2013 to 30 September 2019 were included in this clinical study conducted at Steve Biko Academic Hospital.

Results: Despite the high degree of concurrence (73.9%) between both modalities regarding the main diagnoses, MRI provided additional information in 45.5% of patients and changed the diagnosis in 25% of the patients. It further demonstrated superiority in providing diagnostic information in 97% of cases where the US alone was inadequate to counsel parents regarding the termination of pregnancy, and it completely changed the clinical management in 42% of cases.

Conclusion: It is clearly evident from this study that foetal MRI is a necessity when termination of pregnancy is being considered following an US conducted by the foetomaternal unit. This allows for a complete foetal assessment and gives the managing clinician sufficient diagnostic confidence to prognosticate the future quality of life of the child.


Keywords

foetal MRI; ultrafast foetal MRI; in-utero ultrasound; antenatal sonar; comparison; congenital anomalies

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