Amniotic band syndrome, which occurs when the amniotic membrane, which is filled with amniotic fluid in which the baby floats, entangles or adheres to fetal tissues, is a rare but serious problem that can lead to rupture of the baby’s hands, feet and fingers or death of the baby if it progresses.
What Causes Amniotic Band Syndrome?
Although the exact causes behind amniotic band syndrome are not known, there is a high belief that postpartum and post-abortion infections may be the cause. It is also thought that amniotic band syndrome may start early in pregnancy with amniotic rupture.
Complications of Amniotic Band Syndrome
The severity of complications may vary from one expectant mother to another. In some pregnancies, the baby is born without any problems, while in other pregnancies it can have dramatic consequences. Here are some of the complications of amniotic band syndrome:
- Amniotic band syndrome can cause amputation when the bands wrap around the foot or fingers.
- The baby can develop in the womb with its feet tied.
- If the amniotic membrane wraps around the face, it can cause cleft lip. It is possible to treat this problem after the baby is born.
- In advanced cases, the bands can lead to abdominal defects or narrowing of blood vessels around vital organs.
- If the bands get wrapped around the umbilical cord neck, it can be life-threatening.
Amniotic band syndrome does not usually recur. If one baby has amniotic band syndrome, the risk of a similar condition in other pregnancies is low.
Amniotic Band Syndrome Treatment
There is not much that can be done to treat amniotic band syndrome. If the disease is in advanced form, termination of pregnancy may be considered when it is detected. If it is detected in mild forms, surgical intervention in the womb can be planned to cut the bands. Surgery is not recommended in cases where the bands will not cause any injury to the baby. Fetoscopic surgery is recommended if the band is threatening and can lead to serious problems such as facial deformities. In any case, it is best to follow the situation closely with your doctor and act according to the solution he or she recommends to prevent any further injury.