Fetal premature ventricular contractions (FPVC) are a type ectopic ventricular contractions detected in utero. They are a type of extrasystoles.
Premature ventricular contractions are often followed by a compensatory pause due to the refractory state of the conduction system; the next conducted impulse arrives at twice the normal interval, and the continuity of the rhythm is not broken.
FPVC's can be associated with:
- myocarditis: fetal cardiomyopathy
- cardiac tumours (e.g cardiac rhabdomyoma)
- long QT syndrome 3
- electrolyte imbalances 3
- complete AV block with slow ventricular escape rhythm
Most isolated FPVC's usually resolve spontaneously prior to delivery and those that persist into neonatal period usually resolve within 6 weeks. They can however rarely result in more complex arrhythmias (supraventricular tachycardia in 0.4-1% of cases).
- 1. Drose JA. Fetal echocardiography. W B Saunders Co. (2010) ISBN:1416056696. Read it at Google Books - Find it at Amazon
- 2. Ishimatsu J, Miyajima S, Tashiro M et-al. Treatment of Fetal Premature Ventricular Contractions by Administering Propranolol Hydrochloride Orally to the Mother. J. Matern.-Fetal Investig. 1998;8 (4): 160-162. - Pubmed citation
- 3. Taeusch HW, Ballard RA, Gleason CA et-al. Avery's diseases of the newborn. W B Saunders Co. (2005) ISBN:0721693474. Read it at Google Books - Find it at Amazon