Intrauterine Growth Standards

  • Mira A. Wehbe
  • Lama Charafeddine
  • Khalid A. Yunis
Chapter

Abstract

Fetal growth assessment is essential in identifying the infants’ well-being. When discussing and defining intrauterine growth and intrauterine growth standards, one has to consider definitions of growth restriction. An intrauterine growth-restricted infant (IUGR) is defined as a fetus who fails to reach her growth potential. In published literature, different cutoff points for birth weight are used to define IUGR due to the absence of population-derived percentiles. The most commonly used birth weight cutoff point is the 10th percentile although small for gestational age infants are not necessarily growth restricted. In this chapter, we examined published population-based growth charts from different areas and populations. This close inspection highlights a significant difference between different populations and within the same population, in both developed and developing countries. Authors have used different methodologies to derive specific growth standards (including various calculations and ranges of gestational age, exclusion criteria, study design, and sample size). A high rate of false-positive and false-negative diagnosis of IUGR indicates the importance of adjusting for maternal, fetal, and placental factors affecting growth. A proposed adjustment method is the use of individualized customized growth charts. These charts take into account specific population characteristics and maternal factors in order to develop fetal growth potentials for each particular pregnancy. To conclude, further research is needed to identify a refined uniform definition for IUGR in order to increase our understanding of etiologies, contributing factors, and outcomes of infants with abnormal uterine growth.

Keywords

Ischemia Transportation Corticosteroid Cocaine Warfarin 

Abbreviations

AC

Abdominal circumference

ACOG

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists

BPD

Biparietal diameter

DNA

Deoxyribo-nucleic acid

EDC

Expected date of confinement

EFW

Estimated fetal weight

EMR

East Mediterranean region

FL

Femur length

HC

Head circumference

IUGR

Intrauterine growth restriction

LGA

Large for gestational age

LMP

Last menstrual period

NCPNN

National Collaborative Perinatal Neonatal Network

SES

Socioeconomic status

SGA

Small for gestational age

UK

United Kingdom

US

Ultrasound

WHO

World Health Organization

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mira A. Wehbe
    • 1
  • Lama Charafeddine
    • 2
  • Khalid A. Yunis
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Pediatrics, National Collaborative Perinatal Neonatal NetworkAmerican University of Beirut Medical CenterBeirutLebanon
  2. 2.Department of Pediatrics, National Collaborative Perinatal Neonatal NetworkAmerican University of Beirut Medical CenterBeirutLebanon

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