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Congenital Heart Defects (CHDs)

How are congenital heart defects diagnosed?

While some, especially severe, CHDs might be detected during pregnancy, some aren’t detected until after birth or later in life. During pregnancy, an ultrasound at 11 to 13 weeks will look for extra fluid on the baby’s neck, which may suggest a CHD.  If a CHD is suspected, your doctor might order a special ultrasound for the heart, called a fetal echocardiogram. At birth, a CHD might be suspected if the baby has gray or blue skin, fast breathing, or a heart murmur.