Atrioventricular block during fetal life

Lindsey E. Hunter, John M. Simpson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


Congenital complete atrioventricular (AV) block occurs in approximately 1 in 20,000 live births and is known to result in significant mortality and morbidity both during fetal life and postnatally. Complete AV block can occur as a result of an immune or a non-immune mediated process. Immune mediated AV block is a multifactorial disease, but is associated with the trans-placental passage of maternal autoantibodies (anti-Ro/SSA and/or anti-La/SSB). These autoantibodies attach to and subsequently damage the cardiomyocytes and conduction tissue in susceptible fetuses. In this report, we examine the evidence in reference to means of assessment, pathophysiology, and potential prenatal therapy of atrioventricular block.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)164-178
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of the Saudi Heart Association
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2015
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 King Saud University.


  • Complete atrioventricular block
  • Congenital heart disease
  • Fetal arrhythmia
  • Fetal echocardiography
  • Prenatal therapy


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