The Turkish Journal of Pediatrics 2015 , Vol 57 , Num 2
Postmortem Clinical Examination by Experienced Clinical Geneticists as an Alternative to Conventional Autopsy for Assessment of Fetal and Perinatal Deaths in Countries with Limited Resources
Department of Human Genetics, Medical Research Institute, Alexandria University, Egypt.
The aim of this study was to investigate the usefulness of postmortem external examination performed by an experienced clinical geneticist as an alternative to autopsy in countries with limited resources. We studied a consecutive cohort of couples seeking genetic counseling for fetal loss or perinatal death over a period of 3 years. The study involved 230 couples; only 57 of them submitted a fetus or dead neonate, for whom a meticulous postmortem clinical examination was performed by an experienced clinical geneticist. The diagnosis rate for the group of cases subjected to postmortem examination (57.9%) was much higher than that of the group that comprised cases for which diagnosis was made through evaluation of medical records (27.2%). Whenever fetal or neonatal autopsy is refused or is not feasible, a comprehensive fetal or perinatal postmortem external examination by an experienced clinical geneticist may be a reasonable substitute. Keywords : postmortem examination, fetal loss, perinatal death, congenital malformations, fetal anomalies, prenatal diagnosis, Egypt, autopsy.
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