Non-immune hydrops fetalis: A short review of etiology and pathophysiology

Carlo Bellini, Raoul Cm Hennekam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Hydrops fetalis is an excessive accumulation of fetal fluid. Hydrops is traditionally classified into either immune or non-immune hydrops (NIHF), but in practice, nowadays in the Western world >90% of hydrops is of non-immune origin. The basis of the disorder is an imbalance in the regulation of fetal fluid movement between the vascular and interstitial space. We previously suggested a diagnostic flow-chart for NIHF. In this short review we describe the main mechanisms leading to NIHF.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)597-605
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Medical Genetics, Part A
Volume158 A
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2012


  • Edema of the fetus
  • Fetal hydrops
  • NIHF
  • Non-immune hydrops fetalis
  • Pathogenesis
  • Pathophysiologic pathways

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics(clinical)
  • Genetics


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