Planning management and delivery of the growth-restricted fetus

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

A uniform approach to management of fetal growth restriction (FGR) improves outcome, prevents stillbirth, and allows appropriately timed delivery. An estimated fetal weight below the tenth percentile with coexisting abnormal umbilical artery (UA), middle cerebral artery (MCA), or cerebroplacental ratio Doppler index best identifies the small fetus requiring surveillance. Placental perfusion defects are more common earlier in gestation; accordingly, early-onset (≤32 weeks of gestation) and late-onset (>32 weeks) FGR differ in clinical phenotype. In early-onset FGR, progression of UA Doppler abnormality determines clinical acceleration, while abnormal ductus venosus (DV) Doppler precedes deterioration of biophysical variables and stillbirth. Accordingly, late DV Doppler changes, abnormal biophysical variables, or an abnormal cCTG require delivery. In late-onset FGR, MCA Doppler abnormalities precede deterioration and stillbirth. However, from 34 to 38 weeks, randomized evidence on optimal delivery timing is lacking. From 38 weeks onward, the balance of neonatal versus fetal risks favors delivery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)53-65
Number of pages13
JournalBest Practice and Research: Clinical Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Volume49
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2018

Keywords

  • Biophysical profile
  • Delivery timing
  • Diagnosis
  • Doppler ultrasound
  • Fetal growth restriction
  • Surveillance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

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