"Measuring Big" - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 07-21-2011, 05:23 AM - Thread Starter
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I know ultrasounds are notoriously off when it comes to measuring weight and size.. With my second baby before I questioned things I allowed myself to be induced for the "biggest baby they had ever seen on ultrasound" at my OB's office.. He turned out to be our smallest baby at 7lbs 15 ounces at 37 weeks.. With him I was measuring right on track externally. I just trusted my OB only to hear the nurses talking about how amazing it was that all his patients were induced for big babies in the hallway while I was in labor.


At my u/s at 22.3 I was measuring three weeks ahead as well as externally measuring the same. I currently have duel care through my midwife for my homebirth and at naval because I want to have an established relationship should I have to go into the hospital for some reason. My insurance pays for naval one hundred percent and we pay for my midwife. Also with my constant throwing up still I can get my meds for free through naval.


I had initially decided against the GD test for this pregnancy but now both midwifes are pushing for the test to make sure and talking about fetal growth ultrasounds.. I feel kind of daft that this is my fourth I will give birth to and don't know what to think. Are they checking size because they want to make sure I can have a vaginal birth? Our biggest was nine pounds who had issues being born but none related to size and I had no tearing with him. He was posterior. Or is there another reason they are concerned with the baby measuring ahead? Is it more of a concern because the baby is measuring ahead both externally and internally?


I feel like an idiot asking all these questions but this is the first time it's come up with my pregnancies where they want to start monitoring the growth.


Thanks ladies..

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#2 of 7 Old 07-21-2011, 05:45 AM
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Well, I'm not sure that any of us can say for sure what's going on with your baby right now, but I personally feel  that more often than not "measuring ahead" or "measuring behind" is a bunch of crap.  More eloquently put, I think that u/s have a large rate of error when it comes to estimating gestational age beyond the first trimester (like weeks of error) and fundal height... well, I think it's a bit of an art.  One practitioner can measure you 2cm ahead and another can measure right on.  A lot has to do with making sure they are truly measuring at the base of the bone and actually getting the top where the baby is stretched out to.  In both by previous pregnancies I have "measured behind" by up to 4cm and both times my mw's have freaked out and wanted me to get growth sonograms.  I felt instinctively that nothing was wrong and kept fighting to be left alone.  I would compromise with food journals and attempting to increase my weight gain, etc.  But both times my babies came out larger than expected.  7lb1oz (they thought she was 5.5 pounds) and 8lbs2oz (they thought he was about 6 pounds).  Because of my body shape and type my babies just seem to tuck themselves away under my ribs and way down in my pelvis.  I've had the dislocated ribs to prove it both times.  


So for me, the moral is go with your gut and don't be scared by these measurements.  Especially when it comes to the tactic of "you can't birth your giant 10 pound baby!!"  Because of course you can!  I've got several friends who have, including an 11 pounder at home with no tearing.  As for the GTT, well, maybe compromise with an alternative version of the test that is easier on your body and doesn't carry the 15% false positive rate.  There's another thread about that around here somewhere.  I recall posting a few alternative tests and a link to the jelly bean test article.

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#3 of 7 Old 07-21-2011, 04:03 PM
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I think the concern with measuring big is a few things:

1) doing an US to show there's not twins

2) doing and US to show that it is the baby, not a whole lot of fluid which can be a sign of a problem (or not)

3) probably wouldn't be GD at this point but sometimes (uncommonly) people have pre-exisiting diabetes that could cause a problem. 


Check out the GD thread, like Jaimee said.


Even ACOG who is certainly not low-intervention doesn't recommend c/s or induction for big babies unless they are really big, like >11 lbs.  That criteria is lower (like maybe 10-1/2 lbs??) for moms with GD because those babies have disproportionatly big shoulders sometimes, but still, it takes a pretty big baby to impress even ACOG, so don't let anyone bully you.  Even back when they did xrays (which are way more precise than US) they were still uanble to predict who could birth vaginally.

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#4 of 7 Old 07-21-2011, 08:12 PM
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It is very typical to "measure ahead" with no issues at all.

Jesus-loving Doula/Birth Photographer Mama to Tor 4/2007, Zion 11/2009, Enoch 11/2011, and Zephyr due 12/13/2013

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#5 of 7 Old 07-22-2011, 06:27 AM
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ddcc from Oct...I am measuring (ultrasound and belly) ahead too, but I measure ahead with my first two babes as well. They were 8.5 and 8.9 lbs. They changed my due date with them and I was 2 weeks overdue with the firsrt and a week with the second (had #2 on my LMP due date)


my new midwives got me to do an early GD test around 20 weeks...I passed with flying colours, but I have to take another one after 28 weeks because I have been getting the first (lowest) block on the glucose pee stick-this is the first babe that I have had the glucose +ve on the pee stick and it has been since my first vistit @ 7wks.


They did not change my due date for this baby because of the scans....so it will probably be right on time ;)


I am 26 weeks now, so 2 more weeks until GD test #2.....

I certainly hope that we do not have it...just big ol healthy babies!!!!

mom to ds '07 first day of a new year, dd '09 in the caul, and  ds '11 at home Oct 24th

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#6 of 7 Old 07-22-2011, 07:15 AM
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Just subbing to this thread. I had a midwife appointment today and am measuring 4 weeks ahead. She only told me because I asked and said she wasn't worried about it. After doing some reading online, I'm guessing it's because I'm a grand multiparous and my abdominal muscles are relaxed. I have had three ultrasounds so far and none have shown twins or too much amniotic fluid or what-not, although the baby has always measured a little ahead (by about 4 days).

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#7 of 7 Old 07-22-2011, 08:55 AM
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I measured ahead with both of my kids and had 2 really different outcomes.  My son was 7lb7oz when I had him at 34 weeks- they say if he had been term he likely would have been well over 11 pounds.  He ALWAYS measured weeks ahead.


My daughter measured ahead, and was born at 40 weeks weighing only 7 lbs.  She was completely average sized even though my uterus measured 3-4 weeks ahead my entire pregnancy, and her ultrasounds "indicated" she would be at least 9-10 pounds. 


Im measuring big again this time, and I bet I have another 7 pound baby!

Ash- DS 2003, DD 2006, and one baby Turkey born on Thanksgiving.

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