Slowed Fetal Growth

Jane Foley's picture

QUESTION

Dear Ms Ultrasound,
Hi, I am 26 weeks and the my doctor told me that my baby has no chance of living because he only weighs 11 ounces. The baby has not grown in a month.

Could their measurements be off because I am overweight? Should I ask them to do a vaginal ultrasound? Would it make a difference?

Thank you for your time,
Jennifer

ANSWER

Hi Jennifer,
What I imagine your doctor will do next is to order serial ultrasounds to monitor closely the growth of your baby. In the facility where I work, we would send you to a specialist, a perinatalogist, who would do the ultrasounds himself.

If the baby has not grown, the specialist may want to do a amniocentesis. This is where they take a small amount of amniotic fluid, and look for any chromosome abnormalities. There are a couple chromosome abnormalities that can cause the baby to grow slowly.

At this point in your pregnancy, a vaginal ultrasound wouldn't change measurements significantly.

Your best bet is to ask a lot of questions of your doctor so you have a clear understanding of whats going on.

Regards,
-- Jane, RDMS