The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Hemolytic Disease of the Fetus and Newborn. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Prenatal Treatment

Prenatal treatment of severe HDFN due to anti-D consists of in utero transfusions. Because of significant risks, transfusion is indicated only if fetal monitoring suggests significant hemolytic disease.
Intrauterine transfusion (IUT)
IUT is done when fetal monitoring indicates severe HDFN and the fetus is too premature for early delivery. IUT involves the intraperitoneal infusion of packed red cells. The success of the procedure depends on absorption of the red cells through the subdiaphragmatic lymphatic vessels of the fetus.
Intravenous transfusion (IVT)
Because there may be erratic and inconsistent absorption of intrauterine transfusions in severely hydropic fetuses, IVT was developed. IVT involves transfusing donor RBC directly into the umbilical vein.