Ending a Pregnancy Because of a Fetal Anomaly

Making decisions about your pregnancy isn’t always easy, especially if you’re faced with a complication like a fetal anomaly. 

If you need help navigating your next steps after a fetal anomaly diagnosis, our compassionate medical team at Eve Medical of Miami can help.

Here’s what you need to consider if you’re thinking about ending a pregnancy because of a fetal anomaly. 

What are fetal anomalies?

A fetal anomaly refers to an abnormality in the fetus’s development. These can be detected during ultrasound, blood tests, amniocentesis, transnuchal screening, or other genetic tests. 

About 20% of fetal anomalies occur as a result of genetic factors, while other defects can occur as a result of exposure to environmental toxins. That being said, about 50-70% of anomalies don’t have a clear cause. 

The severity of fetal anomalies can vary widely. For example, some anomalies, such as cleft lips, may require surgery after birth, while fatal fetal anomalies may lead to death (in utero) or within 28 days after birth.

Factors to consider when making your decision

Once you’ve been diagnosed with a fetal anomaly, consider the following factors: 

The type of anomaly 

After you receive a diagnosis of a fetal anomaly, it’s important to learn more about the condition. Learn more about what type of anomaly (or anomalies) you are dealing with. You may want to learn about its potential impact on the fetus and available treatment options (if any). 

In some cases, you may like to review statistics, including the mortality rates of the specific anomaly. Many women find this information useful when making a decision. 

Your personal values

When considering a termination, reflect on your values and what aligns with your values as a family. Some women may choose to continue the pregnancy despite the anomaly, while others may opt to end the pregnancy based on various factors.

Quality of life considerations

Assess the potential quality of life for the child. Consider the long-term implications of the fetal anomaly, including the child's health, development, and the impact on family dynamics. In some cases, the anomaly may drastically reduce the fetus' chance of survival to even make it to labor.

Your emotional health

Take care of yourself during this time. Discovering a fetal anomaly often brings forth a spectrum of emotions, including shock, grief, and even anger. These emotions are normal, and it’s OK to ask for mental health help during this process. If it helps, consider journaling your feelings to help gain clarity.

Seek information from mental health professionals, counselors, and support groups to help process emotions and make informed decisions.

Your partner’s involvement 

Talk to your partner about your fears, thoughts, and preferences. Open and honest communication fosters a supportive environment and ensures that everyone's perspectives are considered.

Navigating the decision-making process

Receiving a diagnosis of a fetal anomaly often initiates a grieving process. Allow yourself and your partner the time and space to grieve, express emotions, and come to terms with the reality of the situation.

Maintain open and honest communication with your team health care providers δΈ€ including your genetic counselor, your OBGYN, and your team here at Eve Medical of Miami. Discuss your concerns, ask questions, and seek clarity on the available options. As members of the National Abortion Federation, the Eve Medical of Miami team specializes in abortion counseling for women who are navigating this difficult  decision-making process.

In addition to open and honest communication with your health care team, seek support from friends, your partner, or even support groups. 

Caring for your medical and emotional needs when undergoing high-risk pregnancy terminations

After you’ve made a decision regarding termination due to a fetal anomaly, your Eve Medical of Miami team is here for you. Our board-certified OB/GYN surgeons and well-trained nursing staff offer the expertise, compassion, and comfort you need. That’s why we assign a nursing team staff member to you as a personal confidant to partner on your behalf with the regional genetic centers. 

Due to the sensitive nature of this decision, our team prioritizes both your medical and emotional needs while you're under our care.

If you’re considering termination due to a fetal anomaly and would like to speak with a counselor, schedule an appointment at Eve Medical of Miami. Remember, we’re here when you need us most.

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