Intrauterine Growth Retardation - IUGR

by Bruce Fagel on Mar. 11, 2013

Accident & Injury Medical Malpractice Accident & Injury  Wrongful Death Accident & Injury  Personal Injury 

Summary: IUGR is a term used to describe an infant whose birth weight is at the bottom 10th percentile for his or her age.

IUGR or intrauterine growth retardation or intrauterine growth restriction involves an improper growth of an infant while inside the mother during pregnancy.  It is applied to an infant whose low birth weight is in the bottom 10th percentile for age, or a weight that is lower than what 90% of other infants weigh at the same age while in the mother. Depending on the severity of the IUGR, there is a risk of the baby running into birth injuries or death.

Doctors need to pay close attention to a pregnancy involving IUGR including monitoring the weight gains with an ultrasound examination, and making sure that the proper date with the pregnancy is measured.  Doctors will also verify IUGR by using a fundal height to correlate with the age of the infant.  It’s also important to note that sometimes babies are small in size and this may have nothing to do with IUGR.  A doctor will be able to verify whether the small size is due to IUGR and if this is the case, track the development of the baby and prepare for a possible early delivery by means of C-Section as the stress of a normal labor may be too much for an infant with IUGR to handle.

Treatment for IUGR is often challenging.  If the age of the infant inside the mother is 34 weeks or longer, the doctor may opt for an early delivery.  If the age of the infant is less than 34 weeks, the doctor may continue monitoring the baby to make sure he or she is healthy and not in danger.  The doctor will likely schedule frequent examinations to monitor the health of the baby and may recommend an early cesarean delivery if it is necessary for the safety of the infant.

IUGR risk is higher under the following conditions:
  • PIH (pregnancy induced hypertension)
  • Preeclampsia
  • Low birth weight with the mother
  • A mother who is not following good nutritional habits
  • Gestational diabetes
  • Multiple pregnancies such as twins or triplets
  • Placenta problems
  • High Altitude
  • Alcohol, cigarette or drug abuse by the mother
  • Kidney disease or high blood pressure with the mother
  • Infections
  • Chromosomal disorders
  • Problems with the umbilical cord

If your infant was seriously injured because of medical malpractice, you may have a medical malpractice lawsuit.  Call the Law Offices of Dr. Bruce G. Fagel & Associates for a free consultation at (800) 541-9376.  Dr. Fagel is a leading medical malpractice attorney and a licensed physician.

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