Dr. Nahla Khalek is an Attending Physician at the Richard D. Wood Jr. Center for Fetal Diagnosis and Treatment at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and Assistant Professor of Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.
She specializes in maternal-fetal medicine, prenatal diagnosis, fetal therapy and reproductive genetics. Dr. Khalek’s clinical focus is in prenatal dysmorphology and placental pathology. She has expertise using advanced diagnostic tools to diagnose rare and complex prenatal syndromes in utero, including genetic syndromes associated with congenital diaphragmatic hernia, CHARGE Syndrome and fetal akinesia sequence. She is also interested in the maternal, fetal and placental biochemical responses involved in twin-twin transfusion syndrome.
Dr. Khalek became interested in fetal medicine during her residency and fellowship, and was drawn to the Richard D. Wood Jr. Center for Fetal Diagnosis and Treatment because of its multidisciplinary and comprehensive approach.
“When patients arrive, we care for them from prenatal diagnosis through the postpartum period. Our hope and goal are to normalize the experience for patients and their families, knowing their unborn baby has a birth defect,” she says. “It’s the best experience I have had, because our patients and their families personify grace.”
Prior to joining the Center team in 2010, Dr. Khalek served as Assistant Clinical Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women’s Health in the Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine and Clinical Genetics at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY. She also served as the Director of Obstetric Ultrasound at Jacobi Medical Center, Bronx, NY.
Dr. Khalek earned her BS degree at the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education, City College of New York, and her medical degree from New York Medical College. She received her Masters in Public Health at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. She completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology and fellowships in maternal-fetal medicine and clinical genetics at Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI. She is board certified in obstetrics and gynecology, maternal-fetal medicine and clinical genetics.
Dr. Khalek also has a special commitment to global maternal health and brings the benefits of her extensive international experience to CHOP. She has worked in Ghana, Eritrea, Nicaragua, Panama and Belize and helped establish OB/GYN teaching and residency programs. Currently she has focused her efforts in Uganda, where she helped create a training program for midwives that incorporates imaging as well as clinical and operative obstetrics.
In spring 2015, Dr. Khalek appeared in a three-part documentary series airing on PBS called TWICE BORN: Stories from the Special Delivery Unit. The Emmy® Award-winning documentary offered a look inside the Wood Center for Fetal Diagnosis and Treatment at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and its unique Garbose Family Special Delivery Unit.
To contact the Richard D. Wood Jr. Center for Fetal Diagnosis and Treatment, call 1-800-468-8376 (1-800-IN-UTERO).
Education and Training
MD - New York Medical College, New York, NY
Obstetrics and Gynecology - Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI
Maternal Fetal Medicine and Clinical Genetics - Wayne State University/Hutzel Women's Hospital, Detroit, MI
Clinical GeneticsMaternal Fetal MedicineObstetrics and Gynecology
MPH - Columbia University/Mailman School of Public Health, New York, NY
Titles and Academic Titles
Attending High-Risk Obstetrician
Director, Prenatal Diagnosis and Therapy Fellowship Program
Assistant Professor of Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
- Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia (CDH)
- Spina Bifida Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
- Twin-Twin Transfusion Syndrome (TTTS)
- Twin Reversed Arterial Perfusion Sequence (TRAP Sequence)
- Selective Intrauterine Growth Restriction (sIUGR)
- Fetal Giant Neck Masses
- Lower Urinary Tract Obstruction (LUTO)
Departments and Services
Prenatal Diagnostic Imaging
Teefey CP, Soni S, Khalek N. Maternal Fetal Surgery: Intervention and Management. Clin Obstet Gynecol. 2020 Jun;63(2):455-467. doi: 10.1097/GRF.0000000000000534. PMID: 32265364.
Two's Company: Multiple Thoracic Lesions on Prenatal US and MRI. Oliver ER, DeBari SE, Didier RA, Johnson AM, Khalek N, Peranteau WH, Howell LJ, Adzick NS, Coleman BG. Fetal Diagn Ther. 2020 Jun 29;1-11. doi: 10.1159/000507783. Online ahead of print.
Oliver ER, DeBari SE, Horii SC, Pogoriler JE, Victoria T, Khalek N, Howell LJ, Adzick NS, Coleman BG. Congenital Lobar Overinflation: A Rare Enigmatic Lung Lesion on Prenatal Ultrasound and Magnetic Resonance Imaging. J Ultrasound Med. 2018 Sep 12. doi: 10.1002/jum.14801. [Epub ahead of print]
Schindewolf E, Khalek N, Johnson MP, Gebb J, Coleman B, Crowley TB, Zackai EH, McDonald-McGinn DM, Moldenhauer JS. Expanding the fetal phenotype: Prenatal sonographic findings and perinatal outcomes in a cohort of patients with a confirmed 22q11.2 deletion syndrome. Am J Med Genet A. 2018 Jul 28. doi: 10.1002/ajmg.a.38665. [Epub ahead of print]
Baumgarten HD, Gebb JS, Khalek N, Moldenhauer JS, Johnson MP, Peranteau WH, Hedrick HL, Adzick NS, Flake AW. Preemptive Delivery and Immediate Resection for Fetuses with High-Risk Sacrococcygeal Teratomas. Fetal Diagn Ther. 2018 May 7;:1-8. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 29734172
Fraga MV, Laje P, Peranteau WH, Hedrick HL, Khalek N, Gebb JS, Moldenhauer JS, Johnson MP, Flake AW, Adzick NS. The influence of gestational age, mode of delivery and abdominal wall closure method on the surgical outcome of neonates with uncomplicated gastroschisis. Pediatr Surg Int. 2018 Apr;34(4):415-419. Epub 2018 Feb 7. PubMed PMID: 29417204.
Laje P, Fraga MV, Peranteau WH, Hedrick HL, Khalek N, Gebb JS, Moldenhauer JS, Johnson MP, Flake AW, Adzick NS. Complex gastroschisis: Clinical spectrum and neonatal outcomes at a referral center. J Pediatr Surg. 2018 Mar 14. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 29628208.
Gebb JS, Khalek N, Qamar H, Johnson MP, Oliver ER, Coleman BG, Peranteau WH, Hedrick HL, Flake AW, Adzick NS, Moldenhauer JS. High Tumor Volume to Fetal Weight Ratio Is Associated with Worse Fetal Outcomes and Increased Maternal Risk in Fetuses with Sacrococcygeal Teratoma. Fetal Diagn Ther. 2018 Mar 1. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 29495013.
Riley JS, Urwin JW, Oliver ER, Coleman BG, Khalek N, Moldenhauer JS, Spinner SS, Hedrick HL, Adzick NS, Peranteau WH. Prenatal growth characteristics and pre/postnatal management of bronchopulmonary sequestrations. J Pediatr Surg. 2018 Feb;53(2):265-269. Epub 2017 Nov 16. PubMed PMID: 29229484; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5828905.
Kim AG, Danzer E, Moldenhauer JS, Khalek N, McClain LE, Waqar LN, Hedrick HL, Johnson MP, Adzick NS, Peranteau WH, Flake AW. Amniotic Fluid Concentrations of Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein Do Not Correlate with Prenatal Metrics in Fetuses with Myelomeningocele. Fetal Diagn Ther. 2017 Jul 29. Doi: 10.1159/000478258. [Epub ahead of print].
Antiel RM, Flake AW, Johnson MP, Khalek N, Rintoul NE, Lantos JD, Curlin FA, Tilburt JC, Feudtner C. Specialty-Based Variation in Applying Maternal-Fetal Surgery Trial Evidence. Fetal Diagn Ther. 2017 Mar 17. Doi:10.1159/000455024 [Epub ahead of print]
Peranteau WH, Iyoob SD, Boelig MM, Khalek N, Moldenhauer JS, Johnson MP, Hedrick HL, Flake AW, Coleman BG, Adzick NS. Prenatal growth characteristics of lymphatic malformations. J Pediatr Surg. 2017 Jan;52(1):65-68.
Rychik J, Khalek N, Gaynor JW, Johnson MP, Adzick NS, Flake AM, Hedrick HL. Fetal intrapericardial teratoma: natural history and management including successful in utero surgery. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2016 Dec;215(6):780.e1-780.e7.
Soni S, Moldenhauer JS, Spinner SS, Rendon N, Khalek N, Martinez-Poyer J, Johnson MP, Adzick NS. Chorioamniotic membrane separation and preterm premature rupture of membranes complicating in utero myelomeningocele repair. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2016 May;214(5):647.e1-7.
Peranteau WH, Boelig MM, Khalek N, Moldenhauer JS, Martinez-Poyer J, Hedrick HL, Flake AW, Johnson MP, Adzick NS. Effect of single and multiple courses of maternal betamethasone on prenatal congenital lung lesion growth and fetal survival. J Pediatr Surg. 2016 Jan;51(1):28-32.
Soni S, Moldenhauer JS, Spinner SS, Rendon N, Khalek N, Martinez-Poyer J, Johnson MP, Adzick NS. Chorioamniotic Membrane Separation and Preterm Premature Rupture of Membranes Complicating In Utero Myelomeningocele Repair. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2015 Dec 12.
Peranteau WH, Boelig MM, Khalek N, Moldenhauer JS, Martinez-Poyer J, Hedrick HL, Flake AW, Johnson MP, Adzick NS. Effect of single and multiple courses of maternal betamethasone on prenatal congenital lung lesion growth and fetal survival. J Pediatr Surg. 2015 Oct 23.
Mennuti MT, Chandrasekaran S, Khalek N, Dugoff L. Cell-free DNA screening and sex chromosome aneuploidies. Prenat Diagn. 2015 Oct;35(10):980-5. Epub 2015 Sep 9. Review. PubMed PMID: 26088741.
Moldenhauer JS, Soni S, Rintoul NE, Spinner SS, Khalek N, Martinez-Poyer J, Flake AW, Hedrick HL, Peranteau WH, Rendon N, Koh J, Howell LJ, Heuer GG, Sutton LN, Johnson MP, Adzick NS. Fetal Myelomeningocele Repair: The Post-MOMS Experience at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Fetal Diagn Ther. 2015;37(3):235-40. Epub 2014 Aug 15.
Peranteau WH, Scott Adzick N, Boelig MM, Alan W F, Hedrick HL, Howell LJ, Moldenhauer JS, Khalek N, Martinez-Poyer J, Johnson MP. Thoracoamniotic shunts for the management of fetal lung lesions and pleural effusions: a single-institution review and predictors of survival in 75 cases. J Pediatr Surg. 2015 Feb;50(2):301-5.
Papanna R, Mann LK, Baschat AA, Bebbington MW, Khalek N, Johnson A, Snowise S, Moise KJ Jr. Cervical length in prediction of preterm birth after laser surgery for twin-twin transfusion syndrome. Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. 2015 Feb;45(2):175-82.
Rychik J, Cohen D, Tran KM, Szwast A, Natarajan SS, Johnson MP, Moldenhauer JS, Khalek N, Martinez-Poyer J, Flake AW, Hedrick HL, Adzick NS. The role of echocardiography in the intraoperative management of the fetus undergoing myelomeningocele repair. Fetal Diagn Ther. 2015;37(3):172-8.
Moldenhauer JS, Soni S, Rintoul NE, Spinner SS, Khalek N, Martinez-Poyer J, Flake AW, Hedrick HL, Peranteau WH, Rendon N, Koh J, Howell LJ, Heuer GG, Sutton LN, Johnson MP, Adzick NS. Fetal myelomeningocele repair: the post-MOMS experience at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Fetal Diagn Ther. 2015;37(3):235-40.
Li MH, Eberhard M, Mudd P, Javia L, Zimmerman R, Khalek N, Zackai EH. Total colonic aganglionosis and imperforate anus in a severely affected infant with Pallister-Hall syndrome. Am J Med Genet A. 2015 Mar;167A(3):617-20. Epub 2015 Jan 21. PubMed PMID: 25604768.
Vrecenak JD, Howell LJ, Khalek N, Moldenhauer JS, Johnson MP, Coleman BG, Victoria T, Hedrick HL, Peranteau WH, Flake AW, Adzick NS. Outcomes of prenatally diagnosed lung lesions in multigestational pregnancies. Fetal Diagn Ther. 2014 Dec;36(4):312-9.
Bebbington M, Victoria T, Danzer E, Moldenhauer J, Khalek N, Johnson M, Hedrick H, Adzick NS. Comparison of ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging parameters in predicting survival in isolated left-sided congenital diaphragmatic hernia. Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. 2014 Jun;43(6):670-4.
Peranteau WH, Moldenhauer JS, Khalek N, Martinez-Poyer JL, Howell LJ, Johnson MP, Flake AW, Adzick NS, Hedrick HL. Open fetal surgery for central bronchial atresia. Fetal Diagn Ther. 2014;35(2):141-7.
Swarr DT, Khalek N, Treat J, Horton MA, Mirzaa GM, Riviere JB, Dobyns WB, Zackai EH. Expanding the differential diagnosis of fetal hydrops: an unusual prenatal presentation of megalencephaly-capillary malformation syndrome. Prenat Diagn. 2013 Oct;33(10):1010-2.
Hackney DN, Khalek N, Moldenhauer J, Ozcan T. Twin-twin transfusion syndrome presenting as polyhydramnios in both fetuses secondary to spontaneous microseptostomy. AJP Rep. 2013 Oct;3(2):83-6. Epub 2013 May 21. PubMed PMID: 24147241; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3799708.
Khalek N, Johnson MP. Management of prenatally diagnosed lung lesions. Semin Pediatr Surg. 2013 Feb;22(1):24-9. PubMed PMID: 23395142.
Khalek N, Johnson MP, Bebbington MW. Fetoscopic laser therapy for twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome. Semin Pediatr Surg. 2013 Feb;22(1):18-23. PubMed PMID: 23395141.
Nathanson J, Swarr DT, Singer A, Liu M, Chinn A, Jones W, Hurst J, Khalek N, Zackai E, Slavotinek A. Novel FREM1 mutations expand the phenotypic spectrum associated with Manitoba-oculo-tricho-anal (MOTA) syndrome and bifid nose renal agenesis anorectal malformations (BNAR) syndrome. Am J Med Genet A. 2013 Mar;161A(3):473-8. Epub 2013 Feb 8. PubMed PMID: 23401257; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3581754.
Victoria T, Epelman M, Coleman BG, Horii S, Oliver ER, Mahboubi S, Khalek N, Kasperski S, Edgar JC, Jaramillo D. Low-dose fetal CT in the prenatal evaluation of skeletal dysplasias and other severe skeletal abnormalities. AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2013;200(5):989-1000.
Bebbington MW, Danzer E, Moldenhauer J, Khalek N, Johnson MP. Radiofrequency ablation vs bipolar umbilical cord coagulation in the management of complicated monochorionic pregnancies. Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. 2012 Sep;40(3):319-24. PubMed PMID: 22302774.
Pri-Paz S, Khalek N, Fuchs KM, Simpson LL. Maximal amniotic fluid index as a prognostic factor in pregnancies complicated by polyhydramnios. Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. Epub 2011 Sep 5. doi: 10.1002/uog.10093. Cited in PubMed; PMID 21898637.
Roybal JL, Moldenhauer JS, Khalek N, Bebbington MW, Johnson MP, Hedrick HL, et al. Early delivery as an alternative strategy for selected high-risk fetal sacrococcygeal teratomas. J Pediatr Surg. 2011 Jul; 46(7):1325-32. Cited in PubMed; PMID 21763829.
Peterson AL, Quartermain MD, Ades A, Khalek N, Johnson MP, Rychik J. Impact of mode of delivery on markers of perinatal hemodynamics in infants with hypoplastic left heart syndrome. J Pediatr. 2011 Jul;159(1):64-9. Epub 2011 Mar 17. Cited in PubMed; PMID 21414630.
Rychik J, Tian Z, Bebbington M, Moldenhauer J, Khalek N, Johnson M. Evaluation of the cardiovascular system in twin-twin transfusion syndrome: it's not about 'scores' but about 'goals'. Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. 2010 Nov;36(5):647-8. Cited in PubMed; PMID 20981720. Read the article
Romero R, Kusanovic JP, Espinoza J, Gotsch F, Nhan-Chang CL, Erez O, Kim CJ, Khalek N, Mittal P, Goncalves LF, Schaudinn C, Hassan SS, Costerton JW. What is amniotic fluid 'sludge'? Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. 2007 Oct;30(5):793-8. PubMed PMID: 17899615; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2494941.
Kusanovic JP, Espinoza J, Romero R, Gonçalves LF, Nien JK, Soto E, Khalek N, Camacho N, Hendler I, Mittal P, Friel LA, Gotsch F, Erez O, Than NG, Mazaki-Tovi S, Schoen ML, Hassan SS. Clinical significance of the presence of amniotic fluid 'sludge' in asymptomatic patients at high risk for spontaneous preterm delivery. Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. 2007 Oct;30(5):706-14. PubMed PMID: 17712870; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2391008.
Hassan SS, Romero R, Tarca AL, Draghici S, Pineles B, Bugrim A, Khalek N, Camacho N, Mittal P, Yoon BH, Espinoza J, Kim CJ, Sorokin Y, Malone J Jr. Signature pathways identified from gene expression profiles in the human uterine cervix before and after spontaneous term parturition. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2007 Sep;197(3):250.e1-7. PubMed PMID: 17826407; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2556276.
Galan I, DeLeon JA, Diaz L, Hong JS, Khalek N, Munoz-Fernandez MA, Santolaya-Forgas J. Effect of a bone marrow microenvironment on the ex-vivo expansion of umbilical cord blood progenitor cells. Int J Lab Hematol. 2007 Feb;29(1):58-63. PubMed PMID: 17224009.
Segata M, Chaoui R, Khalek N, Bahado-Singh R, Paidas MJ, Mari G. Fetal thrombocytopenia secondary to parvovirus infection. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2007 Jan;196(1):61.e1-4. PubMed PMID: 17240236.
Hassan SS, Romero R, Haddad R, Hendler I, Khalek N, Tromp G, Diamond MP, Sorokin Y, Malone J Jr. The transcriptome of the uterine cervix before and after spontaneous term parturition. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2006 Sep;195(3):778-86. PubMed PMID: 16949412.
Hassan S, Romero R, Hendler I, Gomez R, Khalek N, Espinoza J, Nien JK, Berry SM, Bujold E, Camacho N, Sorokin Y. A sonographic short cervix as the only clinical manifestation of intra-amniotic infection. J Perinat Med. 2006;34(1):13-9. PubMed PMID: 16489881; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC1866167.
Jenkins T, Khalek N, Wapner RJ. Prenatal diagnosis of congenital disorders. In: Creasy RK, Resnick R, Iams J, editors. Maternal-fetal medicine: principles and practice. 6th ed. Philadelphia: WB Saunders Co.; 2009. p. 221-274.
Jenkins T, Khalek N, Wapner RJ. Prenatal diagnosis of congenital disorders. In: Creasy RK, Resnick R, Iams J, editors. Maternal-fetal medicine: principles and practice. 6th ed. Philadelphia: WB Saunders; 2008. p. 235-280.
Editorial and Academic Positions
Ad hoc journal reviewer
2009-present, Obstetrics and Gynecology
2008-present, Fetal Diagnosis and Therapy
2007-present, American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology
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