Professor Asma Khalil talks about her work in Maternal Fetal Medicine…
Obstetrics and Gynaecology is a unique medical specialty. It combines both medicine and surgery; acute emergency and elective work. It's one of the most rewarding professions, where we help save the lives of women and babies. This is the only specialty where you have to deal with two or more patients at the same time, making decisions that balance what's good for the mother and what's good for the baby(ies).
My subspecialty is maternal fetal medicine. What attracted me to fetal medicine and therapy is the concept of 'Life before birth'. Treating babies inside the womb is fascinating - every time it's like a miracle. Fetal medicine and therapy are also closely aligned with research and innovation, so we are always trying to be at the cutting edge.
Saving the lives of pregnant women and their babies is what incentivises me to go to work every morning (and many nights!). The challenging part of my job, where I have to deal with a complex pregnancy or treat a sick mother or baby, is very rewarding. More than that, my hunger for knowledge and discovery can be only satisfied by continually doing research studies, trying to find solutions and answers. The drive to get better and better in what we do and to get improved results can only be addressed by collaboration and ongoing research studies.
There are many areas of controversy in prenatal diagnosis and management of twin pregnancies. The risk of stillbirth in twins is twice that in singleton pregnancies, and more than half of twins are born preterm. Fetal growth restriction contributes to the excess risk of perinatal mortality and morbidity in twins, as well as adverse neurological sequelae.
Until recently, there were numerous discrepancies among clinicians and researchers around the diagnostic criteria for, and the optimal monitoring and ideal gestation for, delivery of selective fetal growth restriction (sFGR). To address this, an expert consensus using the Delphi procedure that aims to unify diagnosis has since been developed.
On Saturday 12 June, I’ll be speaking more about fetal growth restriction in twins at the first RCOG Virtual World Congress. During the talk, I will cover the use of twin vs singleton charts, growth assessment, and which fetal biometry to use, as well as presenting new evidence.
I’d love to connect with as many of you as possible during the RCOG’s special four-day event in June, and I look forward to hearing inspiring talks from my fellow colleagues.
Book your place for RCOG Virtual World Congress today.