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MRI helps detect life-threatening pregnancy complication
Date:12/1/2009

al and/or pathology results in 71 of 108 cases. When correlated with surgical and pathology findings, MRI had a 90.1 percent accuracy rate in detecting the presence of accreta. MRI does not expose the mother or fetus to ionizing radiation.

"Our findings demonstrate that MRI is an extremely useful adjunct to ultrasound for assessing this potentially life-threatening obstetric condition," Dr. Malhotra said.

A 2005 study appearing in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology analyzed data from 64,359 births over 20 years (1982 2002) and reported an overall incidence of placenta accreta of one in every 533 deliveries. Women who have previously delivered a baby through a cesarean section have a greater risk for the condition by a factor of three. The risk escalates with each subsequent cesarean section. According to the latest data available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Center for Health Statistics, cesarean deliveries accounted for 31 percent of all U.S. births in 2006, an increase of 50 percent since 1996.

Once placenta accreta is diagnosed, a pregnancy is considered high risk, and specialists will carefully monitor a woman's prenatal care and delivery.

"Having placenta accreta is not necessarily a bad prognostic indicator for the pregnancy," Dr. Malhotra said. "It is not knowing about the condition that is potentially life threatening. Accreta needs to be diagnosed ahead of time so that delivery can be planned."


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Contact: Linda Brooks
lbrooks@rsna.org
630-590-7762
Radiological Society of North America
Source:Eurekalert

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