Course Descriptions


Preconference Course

Course 1  |  Fetal Therapy Simulation Hands-on Workshop

Sunday, 19 June 2022  |  9:00 AM–5:00 PM  |  In-person Only

Cosponsored by University of Toronto and University of Montréal
This course will take place at the Sainte-Justine University Hospital in Montréal; transportation will be provided from the Convention Center.

Limit: 24 Participants
Chairs: Francois Audibert (Canada), Tim Van Mieghem (Canada)
Instructors: Francois Audibert (Canada), Elisabeth Codsi (Canada), Anthony Johnson (USA), Greg Ryan (Canada), Alireza Shamshirsaz (USA), Tim Van Mieghem (Canada), Sandrine Wavrant (Canada)

Course Outline
Simulation Stations
  1. Cord Occlusion:  Bipolar Forceps & Radio Frequency
  2. Fetoscopic Tracheal Occlusion (FETO)
  3. Fetal Shunts (Chest & Bladder)
  4. Laser Ablation - Anterior Placenta
  5. Laser Ablation - Posterior Placenta
  6. Trocar insertion practice station and placental injection


Beverage Breaks:  10:45-11:15 AM;  3:45-4:15 PM
Lunch:  1:00-2:00 PM


Postconference Courses

Course 2  |  First Trimester Screening: What should we be doing?

Thursday, 23 June 2022  | 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM  |  In-person and Virtual

Chairs: Jo-Ann Johnson (Canada), Lisa Hui (Australia)
Description: This course will provide an overview of recent advances in first trimester screening for aneuploidy, birth defects and adverse pregnancy outcome. Topics will cover standards for the first trimester anatomy scan, how to best integrate ultrasound and NIPS, and practical tips for implementing routine first trimester preeclampsia screening. The course will conclude with virtual lecture demonstrating state-of-the-art first trimester imaging for fetal anomalies.

Course Outline
  • Opening remarks — Co-Chairs
  • Lifting the quality of the first trimester anatomy scan - what is achievable on a population-wide basis? — Jo-Ann Johnson (Canada)
  • Tertiary referral for structural abnormalities in the first trimester: lessons from a fetal medicine unit — Tim Van Meighem (Canada)
  • First trimester screening for preeclampsia — Nanette Okun (Canada)
  • NIPT and first trimester ultrasound: working hand in hand — Lisa Hui (Australia)
  • First trimester imaging for fetal anomalies - state of the art — Simon Meagher (Australia)
  • Panel, Q&A, or Case studies — All Instructors

Beverage Break: 9:45-10:15 AM
Lunch: 12:00-1:00 PM


Course 3  |  Exome Sequencing

Thursday, 23 June 2022  | 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM  |  In-person and Virtual

Chairs: Natalie Chandler (UK), Sandi Deans (UK)
Description: The implementation of extensive genomic testing in the prenatal setting has identified different testing approaches and issues with reporting of results. The complexities of delivering such a clinical service will be discussed including the practicalities of performing exome sequencing, the scope of testing performed and reporting the findings. Attendees will understand the nuances in prenatal exome sequencing.

Course Outline
  • Principles of exome sequencing in the context of prenatal testing — Natalie Chandler (UK)
  • ISPD position statement on fetal exome sequencing plus open audience discussion — Igna Van den Veyver (USA)
  • The importance of data sharing and the development of a fetal section in ClinVar — Speaker TBA
  • The value of exome sequencing in other obstetric situations — Richard Choy (Hong Kong)
  • Assessing the standard of exome sequencing prenatal testing — Sandi Deans (UK)
  • Panel Discussion: Challenging prenatal exome sequencing cases within a healthcare setting. — All Instructors; Moderator: Lyn Chitty (UK)

Beverage Break: 9:45-10:15 AM
Lunch: 12:00-1:00 PM


Course 4  |  Complex Twin Pregnancy

Thursday, 23 June 2022  | 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM  |  In-person and Virtual

Cosponsored by NAFTNet

Chairs: Alireza Shamshirsaz (USA), Tim Van Mieghem (Canada)
Description: Complications of monochorionic twinning, such as twin-twin transfusion syndrome, twin anemia-polychythemia sequence and selective fetal growth restriction are amongst the most common problems encountered in fetal medicine. Timely diagnosis of these conditions is important, as fetal therapy can reverse their course and improve outcomes. In this unique course, jointly organized by the International Society for Prenatal Diagnosis (ISPD) and the North American Fetal Therapy Network (NAFTnet), experts from both societies will update you on the latest insights in disease physiology, diagnosis and treatment of monochorionic twins and provide you with helpful tips to manage your daily practice.

Course Outline
  • The importance of understanding the pathophysiology of placental anastomoses in the clinical management of monochorionic twin pregnancies — Mahesh Choolani (Singapore)
  • State of the art management of Twin Twin Transfusion syndrome — Alireza Shamshiraz (USA)
  • Selective growth restriction type: importance of classification and update on management — Bettina Paek (USA)
  • Rare complications of monochorionic twins: TAPS and TRAP — Jena Miller (USA)
  • Management of monoamniotic twin pregnancies: Insights from recent studies — Tim Van Mieghem (Canada)

Lunch: 12:00-1:00 PM
Beverage Break: 2:45-3:15 PM


Course 5  |  Non Invasive Prenatal Testing: The hot topics in 2022

Thursday, 23 June 2022  | 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM  |  In-person and Virtual

Chairs: Francesca Romana Grati (Italy), Sylvie Langlois (Canada)
Description: While the use of cfDNA to screen for common aneuploidy is well established in clinical practice, the field continues to evolve expanding the possibilities to screen for whole genome aneuploidy and offer prenatal diagnosis of monogenic disorders. This workshop will address the current hot topics and new developments in cell free and cell based non invasive prenatal screening and diagnosis.

Course Outline
  • Is it time to move to whole genome NIPS or include microdeletion panels — Dr Brynn Levy (USA)
  • NIPD  and NIPS for monogenic disorders — Elizabeth Schotchman (UK)
  • What to do after a high risk NIPS result: an approach based on knowledge of placental biology — Francesca Romana Grati (Italy)
  • Universal cfDNA testing: consequences of the diagnosis of fetal disorders — Caterina Bilardo (Netherlands)
  • Cell-based NIPT: A new frontier of prenatal diagnosis — Igna Van der Veyver (USA)
  • Informational and counselling needs: How can current online activity inform future resources? — Vardit Ravitsky (Canada)

Lunch: 12:00-1:00 PM
Beverage Break: 2:45-3:15 PM