Welcome to Our Maternal Fetal Medicine Service
The goal of every pregnancy is for mother and baby to enjoy the best possible health before, during and after the birth experience. Every pregnancy carries with it some risks. In some cases, the possible risks require some extra attention.
Risks can increase due to a number of factors. These include the age of the mother, previous problem pregnancies, pre-existing conditions that can complicate a pregnancy (such as diabetes or high blood pressure), conditions that develop during pregnancy (such as gestational diabetes), multiple births, and fetal growth irregularities.
High-risk pregnancies like these can pose challenges to the health of both the mother and the unborn baby. These pregnancies require specialized care and consultation – the kind that’s available at Mackenzie Health through the Maternal Fetal Medicine (MFM) Service.
Experienced Care Team
Mackenzie Health was the first community hospital in Ontario to have full-time, on-site MFM Service including a Maternal Fetal Medicine Specialist, an Ultrasound Technologist experienced in using 3D/4D Ultrasound Technology and a Pediatric Cardiologist with expertise in fetal echocardiography (fetal echo) to care for high-risk pregnancies. Fetal echo is a technology similar to the obstetrical ultrasound that shows an image of the fetus, but is aimed specifically at diagnosing heart conditions in the baby during pregnancy.
Services include maternal and fetal medical care, monitoring, tests, and education around pre and post-partum health. The program is linked with other services at the hospital that touch on high-risk pregnancies, including genetic testing and counselling.
Often, you may simply be monitored more carefully while your pregnancy proceeds as usual. Other times, we may suggest specific treatments and courses of action. Our team works in partnership with the obstetrician midwife, to develop a care plan that suits the mother’s specific needs, and offers the best chance of a successful outcome.
Reasons for Referral to Maternal Fetal Medicine
Women are usually referred to the MFM Service by their obstetrician or another specialist, due to a potential pregnancy related health concern.
This doesn’t mean for certain that the pregnancy will be difficult, or the baby will have health problems. “High-risk” just means a higher than average chance of complications.
The referral is often just a matter of taking precautions, and giving the mother and baby the care and support required for everyone’s health and peace of mind.