Second Opinions for Prenatal Diagnoses

At the Cincinnati Children’s Fetal Care Center, we understand the difficult decisions that come with a prenatal diagnosis. With a second opinion, our goal is to give expecting mothers renewed hope and peace of mind when deciding on a treatment for their growing baby.

Our team provides second opinions for a range of fetal conditions, including:

Getting a fetal care second opinion is a normal process for women who receive a prenatal diagnosis. Many women decide to get a second opinion because they’re told they do not have any treatment options or must terminate their pregnancy. Second opinions can open the door to treatments that may not be available with your primary OB/GYN or maternal-fetal medicine (MFM) specialist. 

With a second opinion, our goal is to give expecting mothers renewed hope and peace of mind when deciding on a treatment for their growing baby. We always study these cases with respect to the initial doctor’s evaluation. Our team will try to confirm their recommendation or see if there are any other treatments available.

Founded in 2004, the Fetal Care Center has some of the most experienced fetal care doctors in the region. We have extensive experience with fetal treatments that many doctors or centers don’t offer, such as prenatal fetoscopic repair for MMC and fetoscopic endoluminal tracheal occlusion (FETO) for CDH. Our team also works closely with specialists at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center and TriHealth, which gives our patients access to a range of knowledge and resources.

The fetal care second opinion process starts with a referral. You can refer yourself by using our online contact form or by calling us. Your OB/GYN or MFM specialist can also refer you for a second opinion. 

When you reach out to us for a second opinion, we will connect you with one of our five fetal care nurse coordinators. These nurses specialize in fetal conditions and will be able to provide more detailed answers about your diagnosis. 

Your nurse coordinator will also walk you through the process of gathering your medical records, diagnosis information, and previous lab and imaging results. You will need to send all of this information to the Fetal Care Center before your second opinion appointment. If your doctor refers you for the second opinion, they can forward your records to us. 

After we receive all of your records, our team of experts will review your information and schedule a time for you to come in. We want to avoid having you make additional trips to Cincinnati Children’s, so if we need extra scans or tests done, we will schedule them for the same day as your appointment or the day before.  Most women have a one- or two-day evaluation. If you need to travel a long distance for a two-day evaluation, our team can help you find a place to stay near the hospital. 

When you come in, your visit will begin with any imaging the team needs (such as an ultrasound or MRI). Once all of your testing is complete, you will meet with your nurse coordinator. If your care plan requires genetic testing, you will also meet with one of our genetic counselors. A social worker will sit with you to help you with local resources, financial assistance and places to stay if needed. 

Following your clinic appointment, you will meet with the fetal care doctors. Because we take a team approach to every case, you will meet with a group of specialists during your second opinion appointment. This group will be able to explain your specific diagnosis. Each specialist will be able to weigh in with their expertise to make sure you get the best possible treatment plan. 

After your appointment, we will work closely with your primary OB/GYN or MFM specialist, so you don’t have to worry about managing any doctor-to-doctor communications. Some women worry about how their original doctor may feel about them seeking a second opinion. But rest assured that it is a normal process for these diagnoses.\

Insurance coverage varies for every case, so it’s important to talk to your insurance provider before your appointment to see what your coverage is for second opinions so you know what to expect. Sometimes insurance does not cover repeat testing. 

Cincinnati Children’s also has a precertification team who will contact your insurance provider before your appointment to check on coverage for tests and second opinions. If there are any gaps in coverage, we will be sure to reach out to you and provide more information before your appointment.

You will only need to bring your photo ID and insurance card with you to your second opinion appointment. We will work with you to make sure we gather all of your medical records, scans and test results before you arrive.

There are a few different ways you can start the second opinion process:

  • Ask your doctor for a referral – Your OB/GYN or MFM specialist can reach out to the Fetal Care Center to start the second opinion process.
  • Call our referral coordinators – You can call 888-338-2559 to speak with one of our nurse coordinators. If you call after hours, the nurse on call will leave a message for one of our coordinators, and we will call you back as soon as possible. 
  • Fill out our online form – You can fill out our online second opinion form. One of our nurse coordinators will follow up with you within two business days.