I had the fetal echocardiogram (ultrasound of the heart) today and subsequently a meeting with a genetic counselor. Apparently my baby's heart is just fine and normal (the cardiologist said there was NO effusion, contrary to the sonologist's finding). BUT he confirmed that there was an echogenic intracardial focus (looks like a bright spot on the heart), which in and of itself is found in normal babies BUT can also be found in 20% of babies with Down Syndrome. He told me not to worry about it... he sees them all the time.
However, I had to see the genetic counselor anyway because at my MW appointment yesterday I learned my U/S showed the EIC AND another soft or weak marker (choroid plexus cyst) that in the low-risk population (under 35, no previous history of chromosomal abnormality, etc) doesn't mean anything. However, since I had *two* soft markers instead of just one, I had to see the counselor. The counselor explained that thanks to a first trimester screening I agreed to have (maternal triple screening), my chances (before the marker findings) of having a chromosomal abnormal child were 1 in 8,250 for Down Syndrome and 1 in more than 10,000 for Trisomy 18 -- the two syndromes the soft markers sometimes indicate (actually, one marker is for Down syndrome and the other for Trisomy 18, not both for both if that makes sense).
There was NOTHING else in my U/S (hard markers like heart defects or other indicators like small head/brain development, clenched hands, rocker-bottom feet) that indicated anything but a normal happy baby, but still, I had to listen to all the statistics and decide whether I wanted an amnio, where the chances of M/C are 1 in 200. My gut told me to skip it, and when the head director of the u/s unit came in and said: your baby is fine, your markers bump you up only slightly to 1 in 7,400 for DS and 1 in 9,000 for Tr18 -- not nearly enough to outweigh the risk of the amnio, in his opinion. So the husband and I decided AGAINST the amnio... What a day!
BTW: The first person who knows where the title of my post comes from gets a special cyberhug!