Maternal Cardiac Teams
UR Medicine has two new, unique multidisciplinary programs for pregnant people with cardiac disease. These are the only programs of their kind in Upstate New York.
Although having a baby is an exciting time, having cardiac disease can put both parent and baby at risk for complications before and during delivery. There are a number of normal changes that women undergo during pregnancy to support the developing baby; however, for women with cardiac disease, these changes can put additional strain on the heart.
Women with cardiac conditions who are considering pregnancy or are pregnant need to be followed and cared for by a team of specialists to help parent and baby have the best outcomes possible.
Women with cardiac conditions are followed by these two special teams:
What to Expect from These Teams
By working together to develop coordinated plans both before and after pregnancy, the team helps ensure that women have an integrative, multidisciplinary care team for their pregnancy.
Every month, the team (including extended members such as care coordinators, inpatient nursing, and anesthesiology) reviews every patient with complex heart disease who is pregnant and nearing delivery, assuring that everyone on both the cardiac and inpatient teams are ready for the delivery.
In addition to providing complex cardiac care, UR Medicine offers additional referrals and care coordination for all aspects of a patient’s reproductive and cardiac care.
We offer AIUM certified Level II OB/GYN ultrasound including fetal echocardiography, assuring fetal assessment and fetal monitoring is available on-site. This allows the team to have all of the information available to help guide pregnancy management.
For those that are followed in ongoing care, our fetal and maternal care coordinators help families with maternal or fetal cardiac disease navigate all of the care that may be needed, including help with coordinating appointments, answering questions, and assuring they are aware of planned services and any test results.
Our integrated office also offers reproductive genetics services, which can help a patient assess if her cardiac disease is something that would have the potential to be passed on to her fetus, as well as help her understand screening options for common pregnancy concerns.
Planned pregnancies are healthy pregnancies. Both of our teams are happy to see women considering their reproductive options and discuss pregnancy risks and benefits. For women who wish to become pregnant, our teams work together to ensure that women with cardiac conditions enter pregnancy as healthy as possible with medications and care optimized.
When a patient is not interested in pregnancy, her cardiac disease can make the options for contraception more limited. Our team works closely with the UR Medicine Complex Contraception Clinic to be certain that women have a full range of counseling and options to assure that all of their pregnancies are planned.