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An 8 year follow up of babies in the Wessex trial of universal newborn screening for permanent childhood hearing impairment (

) has shown that the screening leads to early referral. Eleven of 35 children with permanent childhood hearing impairment born outside periods of universal screening and 23 of 31 born during such periods were referred before the age of 6 months.

The survivors of severe twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome (TTTS) treated by intrauterine laser coagulation of placental anastomoses usually have normal cardiac function but they may have structural congenital heart disease, particularly pulmonary stenosis in recipient twins. In Bonn, Germany (

) 89 survivors (51 recipient twins, 38 donor twins) of 73 pregnancies (146 fetuses) with severe TTTS had detailed echocardiography at a median age of 21 months. Before laser treatment, 28/51 recipient twins had typical signs of volume overload and 9/38 donors had no or reversed end diastolic flow in the umbilical artery. On follow up, echocardiography was normal in 44 recipient and 34 donor twins. Among the 51 recipient twins, four had pulmonary stenosis, two atrial septal defect, and one ventricular septal defect. Among the 38 donor twins, three had atrial septal defect and one had acquired pulmonary hypertension; none had pulmonary stenosis.

Only 2.5–5% of children with idiopathic cardiomyopathy have …

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