An amniotic fluid embolism is a rare obstetric emergency where fetal cells/hair/debris enter the mother’s blood stream via the placental bed.
WHY IS IT A PROBLEM?
This condition can lead to heart/lung collapse and massive bleeding (coagulopathy).
WHAT MAKES US SUSPECT IT?
Advanced maternal age, gravida ≥ 5 (liver births or still births), cesarean or instrument delivery, placenta previa, placenta abruption, preeclampsia
- Cariogenic shock
- Respiratory failure
- Disseminated intravascular coagulopathy
HOW DO WE TREAT IT?
Respiratory/hemodynamic support can be used to stabilize the patient.
A transfusion may or may not be needed.
Autopsy can reveal the presence of swirls of fetal squamous cells/mucin in the pulmonary artery branches.
ARCHIVE OF STANDARDIZED EXAM QUESTIONS
This archive compiles standardized exam questions that relate to this topic.
Page Updated: 09.30.2016