Fetal Heart Center

If you are welcoming a new baby to your family, you want everything to go smoothly for a healthy pregnancy and childbirth. At the St. Louis Children's Hospital and Washington University Heart Center, we offer exceptional prenatal and newborn heart care to help your baby get a healthy start in life.

Fetal Heart Care at The Heart Center: Why Choose Us?

As part of the renowned Heart Center, the Fetal Heart Center is a national destination for prenatal and newborn heart care. We offer:

  • Pediatric cardiologists specifically trained to detect heart disease in unborn babies
  • Access to the entire Heart Center team, including cardiologists, surgeons, neonatologists (specialists in newborn care) and experts from other pediatric heart specialties
  • Dedicated diagnostic specialists, such as fetal echocardiography sonographers for heart ultrasound
  • High-risk pregnancy management from the Fetal Care Center, a partnership among St. Louis Children’s Hospital, Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine
  • Concierge-level, coordinated care for expecting parents including personalized birth plans and post-delivery transportation

Services We Provide to Expecting Families

At the Fetal Heart Center, our team specializes in detecting, evaluating and managing congenital heart defects before your baby is born. Your family and obstetrician can trust our team for expert diagnosis and treatment recommendations for any congenital heart defect. We offer the highest standard of care for newborns with heart disease and their mothers.

From diagnosing potential conditions to providing emergency procedures at any stage of labor, we provide full-service care to expecting families, including:


  • Complete information about the heart defect, treatment options and potential outcomes
  • Fetal echocardiograms for women with a family history of congenital heart disease
  • Advanced imaging to evaluate abnormal test results or concerns
  • Family counseling services to help cope with the stress of a new diagnosis

Care for mother and baby before and after delivery

  • Birth plans that minimize transport and keep mothers and babies close to one another
  • Full coordination with your delivery center to ensure a smooth transition from prenatal to postnatal care
  • Interventions for fetal and infant heart conditions diagnosed during any stage of pregnancy or labor
  • Cardiac monitoring for infants with conditions that may affect the heart
  • Counseling services to help you manage your child’s care through infancy

What to Expect

We understand how concerning it is to learn that your baby may have a heart condition. Our goal is to provide compassionate, comprehensive care to ease this burden and allow you to focus on the exciting arrival of your new baby.

Before delivery, we invite your family to spend a day with us, touring our world-class facilities and Inpatient Heart Center. You will meet one-on-one with our doctors, who take the time to make sure you feel confident about your care plan. Learn more about visiting and what to expect.

Your dedicated nurse navigator will discuss our inclusive approach to care with you. Our approach emphasizes planning ahead, long-term partnership and guidance throughout childhood. Learn more about the programs and services we provide for children of all ages.

When the big day arrives, you can rely on us for exceptional care. Our entire team knows your personal preferences, birth plan, full medical history and everything your baby will need for the healthiest start possible. In the words of one of our doctors, “When a mother goes into labor, everyone on the cardiology side is prepared for it.”

Meet the Experts

From top-ranked doctors to skilled fetal imaging specialists to our expert nurse navigator, the Fetal Heart Center team is here for you. Meet the team.

Related Programs & Services

We offer world-class care to children thanks in part to generous gifts from hundreds of people who have joined us as Guardians of Childhood. This philanthropic support enabled us to fulfill our mission to do what's right for kids. Join us in making health care better for all children.

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