Extra Fluid Behind the Baby's Neck

Updated on August 19, 2008
S.K. asks from Fortville, IN
11 answers

Have any of you experience with the baby that has extra fluid behind baby's neck? my measurement is 6.3mm. have you done any kind of testing to get the results if there's a problem with the baby? Im thinking of CVS (chronic villi sampling procedure).this procedure can give us a tissue sample from the placenta. Analyzing the chromosomes in this tissue can diagnose or rule out numerical chromosome abnormalities that frequently cause extra fluid behind a baby’s neck early in the pregnancy. I am worrying about the baby! I do not want the baby to have any complications. thanks so much for your time and help.

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So What Happened?

I want to thnk you all for your feedback and opinions! I went ahead and had the CVS. I had to know and want to make sure the baby's okay. We got the good results! We got the results of the CVS and everything looks good. Basically they did not see any evidence of extra or missing chromosomes or anysignificant structural abnormalities with the chromosomes. This meansthere was no evidence of trisomy 13,18, 21 (Down syndrome), or Turnersyndrome. It may be important to monitor fetal growth and the size of the cystichygroma. At the very least this would include an 18-20 week anatomicalsurvey to evaluate general fetal anatomy followed by a fetalechocardiogram at 22-24 weeks to evaluate the fetal heart more closelysince babies with extra fluid at the back of the neck and/or a cystichygroma have an increased risk for heart defects.
thanks to you all so much!!

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answers from Cleveland on

They told me my son seemed to have a little extra fluid too which points to down syndrome and something else i decided to only have a quad screen (blood tests) to tell the risk of there being damaged chromosomes (or too many!!). The reason i chose to do only this is because i was smart enough to ask about the risks of the cvs test and immediately decided not to have it done. the risk of miscarriage was way too high for me too be comfortable!!! By the way my son is perfectly normal!! But good luck hope everything is well!!

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answers from Cleveland on

Hi S.,

I am sure it is very scary to hear that there is extra fluid - and hard to wait to find out until the baby is here, although you may find out more at the 20 week U/S. We know someone that was told their baby was going to have several issues and possibly even be incompatible with life once born and they decided not to do any more testing - when the baby was born - he was completely HEALTHY - no problems at all. I'm sure there are times when these tests really show something, but sometimes having them too early just freaks people out unnecessarily. Just go with your gut and do what you feel is best. Good Luck and God Bless!



answers from Cleveland on

It's totally up to you. I however would not do any test that can cause anymore risk than there may be. When I was preggy with Danny in my first ultrasound they found he had choroid plexus cyst. They had me so scared, saying we could have down syndrome or even die after birth and wanted me to get an amnio. I knew there were risk with having one and that it could cause me to lose the baby so I decided not to. God blessed me with this baby and no matter what may or may not be wrong with him I was gonna have him and take care of him. He is now 7 and in good health. Sometimes I think Doctors just like to scare us mothers valid or not.Whatever you decide though, it's OK!



answers from Cincinnati on

HI S.,
I had the same thing happen with my last one, he is now 8 months old and nothing wrong. I have 4 kids and I am 36, they told me in an ultra sound that he had fluid behind his neck and that he was at risk for down's syndrome, since there are things that could happen with testing such as miscarrying we decided that since it didn't matter to us if anything was wrong with him and we wouldn't do anything differently if there was that we would not do the extra tests, another ultra sound later showed no fluid. The drs. told us that they have to let you know if they see the slightest thing wrong just so you are aware and know your options. It didn't matter to us if there was anything wrong and I did worry until I found out the ultra sound was clear the next time, but I wasn't going to risk anything happening doing testing that wasn't going to solve anything besides ease my mind and I just didn't want to take those risks. Hope this helps.



answers from Cleveland on

I had a cvs done when i was about 12 or 13 weeks (my twin girls are 6 months old now). I wanted it done when they noticed extra fluid on the back of one of their necks so I knew what to expect. I am so happy I had it done. Everything tunred out fine and I also got to find out the sex at that time too (and in my case the fact that they were identical twins).

If you decide after 14 weeks that you want testing done it is a much more uncomfortable procedure.



answers from South Bend on

I would talk to your ob/gyn about this. It may be nothing but there could be an underlying issue. Your doctor will weigh out the pros and cons of having this procedure done. I don't know a whole lot about it except that occassionally after having this procedure done a woman can end up miscarrying the baby. This is definitely something you need to discuss with your ob/gyn. If you feel very strongly about getting one then let him or her know. Find out the risks and benefits of the procedure before you make a final decision. One benefit is that you can find out if everything is ok or if there is an issue. As I mentioned before on rare occassions this procedure can cause a miscarriage of the baby. Good luck and I hope everything works out for you. Please let me know what happens.

I am 31 and have been married for almost 12 yrs. My husband and I have 3 boys ages 10,7, and 4.



answers from Indianapolis on

What did the doctor tell you about this? OB has one of the highest malpractice insurance rates, and you can sue until your child is 18, so I think OB docs are just very, very cautious, offering every test they can imagine to cover themselves.
I would say have additional testing if it will give you peace of mind. WHen I was preg with my last, they also saw the chorionic plexus cyst in the brain. They said it can normally disappear, and be nothing, or I could have a baby with trisomy 18. These children don't live beyond a couple of years, if they make it that long. At the time, I had two daughters, and a son. My son was just sure I would have another girl, and he would have a younger sister bossing him around like his older sisters did. He was 9 at the time I was pregnant. Anyway, I realized he wouldn't know what it was like to have a younger sister until he had one. He could worry about it for the next 7-8 mos, but wouldn't KNOW until it happened. I decided that is how it would be for me. IF I found out I had a baby with Down's or any genetic anomaly, I would then spend the next 7-8 mos. worrying what it would be like. I wouldn't KNOW. I work in a NICU, and have seen Down's babies with all types of abilities. And having the test wouldn't tell me my baby wouldn't have autism, or learning disabilities. So I opted for no further testing. I wasn't going to terminate, no matter the outcome. And being 39, I had plenty of increased risk. In the end, I had a perfectly health, active little boy. My son was thrilled, but now he is finding out what it is like to have a little brother!
Good luck to you and your decision. You will do what is right for you and your family. Don't let the docs talk you into anything. Do what will make you feel better. Relaxed mom during her pregnancy will be much bettter for the baby.



answers from Toledo on

Hi S.....
I opted to have all the testing done for the chromosomal abnormalities with me being considered "high risk" because of my age. My first initial ultrasound tests showed that there was more fluid then there should be and that I was at a greater risk for a Down Syndrome baby. I opted to have the amnio done and everything came back fine. All my Dr's told me that it is hard to get an accurate read with the ultrasound and that they get more false positives with the ultrasound. Any of the tests that you can have at this point carry risks but if you are like me I just had to know for my peace of mind. Good Luck!!!



answers from Indianapolis on


If you haven't already, I would go to a peri-natologist (not sure of the spelling - Mine was Dr. Sumner) and they can spell out the different scenarios of what the odds are of finding something vs. what the risk to the baby is, etc.

Before you go through a placental biopsy (CVS), there is a blood test (they'll prick of the finger to do 6 different dots to send off to a lab) they can do to let you know what the odds are of something genetic or chromosomal going on. I would wait for the results of that test before deciding on whether or not to go through with the CVS or an Amnio.

Keep in mind that with anything like CVS or Amnio, there's a chance of miscarriage or something happening to the baby (particularly with CVS - and again, the dr. can spell everything out). So factor that into the equation on whether or not to proceed with Amnio or CVS.

We had to make decisions like that too with both our daughters - because we had help conceiving, and they asked us about doing CVS or Amnio. We decided to do the blood test first, and would make any further decisions based on that info. Both or reproductive surgeon and OB/GYN supported our decisions to "not touch the baby" unless it was absolutely necessary.

Many prayers for you and your family in the meantime!



answers from Indianapolis on

If your baby is diagnosed with something (would it be something like Down's Syndrome?), what would the next steps be? If there is nothing that can be done until the baby is born, I would really consider not having any testing done. This, of course, is totally up to you. There are just risks to having any procedure done is all. Also, just to let you know, one of the reasons these tests are done is to help you decide what you want to do in the event there is something wrong (like an abortion or preparing for adoption). Don't let that frighten you though. If knowing what is going on with your baby is simply to relieve your fears, have them done. Otherwise, if you can wait, I would. The Lord is capable of so much and He will see you through anything.

God bless,



answers from Dayton on

I'm so sorry you're experiencing the worry of this. We just had child #4 in July 2007. We had an ultra-sound to verify the date. I had never had an early ultra-sound with the other pregnancies. We had the same thing happen. I can't remember the exact measurement, but we worried the whole time. We decided not to do any further testing. We did have three ultra-sounds total. One around 12-13weeks, one around 15 weeks and then the one they do around 20 weeks. At the 20 week ultra-sound they didn't detect any markers for chromosomal defects. And we had a healthy baby boy. I just wish sometimes that i had never had the ultra-sound and I don't see where they're drawing their conclusion since a lot of women don't get an early ultra-sound. I hope this helps to calm your worries. I hope everything goes beauitifully.

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