Amniotic band syndrome at 14 weeks of gestation: a case report and literature review

Lalitha N, Reena Abraham, Umamaheswari G


Amniotic band syndrome comprises of a group of congenital anomalies involving the limbs, trunk, head and face characterised by asymmetry of involvement and varying severity. While mild variants have a good prognosis with normal life expectancy, severe cases may be incompatible with life. It is sporadic in occurrence with many theories postulated towards the pathogenesis. We report a case of amniotic band syndrome diagnosed at 14 weeks gestation in a 22 year old low risk primigravida-the foetus was seen as an amorphous mass with multiple anomalies, confirmed by autopsy. While early ultrasound helped detect lethal anomalies, correlation with autopsy provided an insight into possible disruptions in early foetal development leading to the various anomalies.


Amniotic band syndrome, Amnion rupture sequence, Prenatal diagnosis

Full Text:



Chen CP. Prenatal diagnosis of limb body wall complex with craniofacial defects, amniotic bands, adhesions and upper limb deficiency. Prenat Diagn. 2001;21:418-24.

Cheschair NC, Reibaueur PJ. A comparative study of prenatal diagnosis and perinatal autopsy. J Ultrasound Med. 1994;13:451-6.

Johns N, Al-Salti W, Cox P, Kilby MD. A comparative study of prenatal ultrasound findings and postmortem examination in a tertiary referral centre. Prenat Diagn. 2004;24:339-46.

Sankar VH, Phadke SR. Clinical utility of fetal autopsy and comparison with prenatal ultrasound findings. J Perinatol. 2006;26:224-9.

Enid Gilbert-Barness, Raj P. Kapur, Luc Laurier Oligny, Joseph R. Siebert. Foetal anomalies. In: Enid Gilbert-Barness, Raj P. Kapur, Luc Laurier Oligny, Joseph R. Siebert, eds. Potter’s Pathology of the Foetus, Infant and Child. 2nd ed. US: Mosby-Elsevier; 2007.

Kulkarni ML, Gopal PV. Amniotic band syndrome. Indian Paediatr. 1990;27:471-6.

Higginbottom MC, Jones KL, Hall BD. The amniotic band disruption complex: timing of amniotic rupture and variable spectra of consequent defects. J Paediatr. 1979;96:544-9.

Lockwood C, Ghidini A, Romero R, Hobbins JC. ABS: reevaluation of its pathogenesis. Am J Obstet Gynaecol. 1989;160:1030-3.

Seeds JW, Cefalo RC, Herbert WNP. Amniotic band syndrome. Am J Obstet Gynaecol 1982;144:243-8.

Bamforth JS. Amniotic band sequence: Streeter’s hypothesis reexamined. Am J Med Genet. 1992;44:280-7.

Moerman P, Fryns JP, Vandenberghe K, Lauweryns JM. Constrictive amniotic bands, amniotic adhesions, and limb-body wall complex: discrete disruption sequence with pathogenetic overlap. Am J Med Genet. 1992;42:470-9.

Diana W. Bianchi, Timothy M. Crombleholme, Mary E. D’ Alton, Fergal Malone. Limb anomalies. In: Diana W. Bianchi, Timothy M. Crombleholme, Mary E. D’ Alton, Fergal Malone, eds. Foetology-Diagnosis and Management of the Foetal Patient. 2nd ed. New York: McGraw Hill; 2010.

Cromblehome TM. The fetus with amniotic band syndrome, the unborn patient. In: Harrison MR, Evans MI, Adzick NS, Holzgreve W, eds. The Art and Science of Fetal Therapy. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, PA: WB Saunders; 2001: 489-502.

Ho DM, Liu HC. The ABS: report of two autopsy cases and review of the literature. Clin Med J. 1987;39:429-36.

Huang CC, Eng HL, Chen WJ. Amniotic band syndrome: report of two autopsy cases. Chang Gung Med J. 1995;18: 371-7.

Kalousek DK, Fitch N, Paradice BA. Amnion defects. In: Kalousek DK, Fitch N, Paradice BA, eds. Pathology of the Human Embryo and the Previable Fetus. 1st ed. An Atlas. New York: Springer-Verlag; 1990.

Ossipoff V, Hall BD. Etiologic factors in the ABS: a study of twenty-four patients. Birth Defects. 1977;13:117-21.

Cignini P, Giorlandino C, Padula F, Dugo N, Cafà EV, Spata A. Epidemiology and risk factors of Amniotic band syndrome or ADAM sequence. J Perinat Med. 2012;6(4):59-63.

Donnai D, Winter RM. Disorganisation: a model for early amnion rupture? J Med Genet. 1989;26:421-5.

Young ID, Lindenbaum RH, Thompson EM, Pembrey ME. Amniotic bands in connective tissue disorders. Arch Dis Child. 1985;60:1061-3.