Information on the outcome of pregnancy was collected on 92 fetuses with cystic hygroma or nuchal pad, identified prenatally. Forty three (47% of the total) were associated with abnormal karyotype. Twenty five (27%) had normal karyotype but an additional abnormality was identified on ultrasound scan. There were 10 liveborn babies in this group of whom seven had significant problems postnatally. In twenty four (26%) cases the cystic hygroma or nuchal pad was an isolated finding. Seventeen (89% of those in which the pregnancy was electively continued) were liveborn and reported to be normal. Those with a normal karyotype, no other anomaly identified on antenatal scan, and smaller non-septate lesions have a good prognosis.
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