Measuring 3 weeks small @ 38 wks... help - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 01:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi All~
So, I just had my 38 week appointment yesterday, and my OB shocked me to say "you are only measuring 35 weeks." This was a big surprise to me, since so far she hadn't said anything about lagging behind in size. She decided to schedule an ultrasound for next week. I was surprisesd at that, because she had basically told me at 20 weeks that I wouldn't be getting any more ultrasounds and I would next get to see my little man when he was born. I asked her how big she thought he was and she said "well, instead of being a little over 6 lbs, he is a little under 6 lbs." That scared me, becuase I didn't think I would be this far along and still only be carrying a baby that was in the 5-lb range.

Anyone else go through this? What could this mean? I was a little shocked when she told me this, so I didn't ask a lot of questions, so I am really worried. :

Katrina
EDD 8.8.06
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#2 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 01:41 PM
 
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Could you have dropped?... I know that my measurements changed by a few centemeters when I dropped.

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#3 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 01:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hmmmmm... yes, I have definitely dropped... could that throw the measurement off? Wish she would have at least tried to explain why the funky measurement, rather than let me ruminate over it for the next 7 days...:
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#4 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 01:52 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KT&Munchkin
Hmmmmm... yes, I have definitely dropped... could that throw the measurement off? Wish she would have at least tried to explain why the funky measurement, rather than let me ruminate over it for the next 7 days...:
Doctors are always good for that.

Welcome to Mothering btw -- there are a few of us from this due date club alone who live in Mass!!
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#5 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 02:26 PM
 
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I am surprised by your doctor's response. I am measuring 33 cm at 36 weeks and my midwife wasn't alarmed at all because I have dropped so much. I've actually never measured more than 33 cm. I would be interested in knowing the results of your ultrasound.
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#6 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 02:33 PM
 
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I agree, when you drop, the measurement is off. I am surprised your doctor became that concerned over a few centimeters.

When you do have your ultrasound, keep in mind that "weighing" the baby thru ultrasound can be VERY far off. From what I have heard as much as 2 lbs or more in some cases.
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#7 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 02:36 PM
 
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I am sending you lots of good energy KT&Munchkin, I have been dealing with this issue since 20 weeks. Most of which I attribute to overreactive doctor's and the lack of understanding that babies, just like mommies, are all different sizes.

I'm 34 weeks and have had atleast monthly ultrasounds since 20 weeks, been sent to a specialist, etc. all of which were because the baby was measuring small (between the 10-18th percentile).

I just wanted to send some encourage leading up the US, don't surprised if the numbers are funky... the estimates for size and weight can be off by as much as 3 weeks!! That's a huge margin of error in a baby!
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#8 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 02:44 PM
 
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Another MA mama! And HOLDEN! I am in Paxton! We are next door neighbors!
I was measuring right on in cm every visit with my hb midwife until these last two visits. Now I am a few weeks behind. 37 weeks and measuring 35.5- my midwife isn't at all concerned and neither am I. Also, that is a rough measurement not a sure guide. As was already said, we aren't all identical. I wouldn't feel at all badly calling her up and asking her why specifically she feels you need the ultrasound and what she is looking for since size is SO hard to tell by ultrasound at this point. Let her explain herself to you in detail. Why should you sweat it for 7 days? That is a LONG time!
And for the record, my baby is estimated at below 6 lbs. Being that they gain about 1/2 lb a week, if I go to term, that means at least 7 lbs which is not small. I was 5lb 6 oz when I was born (on time) and there was nothing wrong with me. I am just a pip squeak!
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#9 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 02:53 PM
 
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This is my third pregnancy and my fundal height topped out with the first two at 35/36 cm. or so around 36 weeks. With this baby I am measuring 35 with only 1.5 weeks till baby's due date. There is nothing to be alarmed at and I'm sorry your care provider hasn't reassured that this is perfectly normal. Personally, I think the ultrasound request is rather silly but thats just my huge opinion BTW, my babies were 7 lbs 10 oz and 7 lbs 3 ozs, so good size babies.
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#10 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 02:59 PM
 
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My CNM stops measuring fundal height at 37 weeks, and she just feels around. She told me yesterday that the baby is in the 6lb range, and I am 38 weeks today. She's not concerned. Late U/S are not very accurate, I personally would refuse to get one. It's only going to make you worry.

PS I'm also in MA, my DH is originally from Oakham.

Mom to DD#1 8/04, nursed 43 months, DD#2 8/06, nursed 21 months and DD#3 9/08, still nursing strong
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#11 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 03:11 PM
 
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Oakham! Another neighbor!
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#12 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 03:21 PM
 
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Hello,
Well I just had an u/s yesterday at 37 wks for some issues we are having but I was told I was measuring big (I think because I've got lots of momma padding). Anyway, they estimated that my baby is barely 6lbs too. The tech also reminded me that the u/s can be off by as much as 1lb either way. At best it is very inexact. I say call your dr get more details about why she is concerned. Don't sit and freak out for a week, don't put yourself through that.
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#13 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 03:31 PM
 
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My midwife just said yesterday that after 37 weeks she often sees no change or a decrease in measurements due to the baby getting lower in the pelvis. I had been measuring 3-4 weeks ahead, but yesterday I was only measuring 1 week ahead. It doesn't sound like there's something "wrong" with your measurements, just a smaller baby and you've dropped. But I guess doctors have to cover themselves just in case.
Oh, and welcome from another MA resident!

milk donation : mother to Ryan (6), AJ (5), Nate (2), Maia (1) all born at home, I have a kid-friendly food & bento blog, : :
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#14 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 06:23 PM
 
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You would be perfectly in your rights to call your doctor - demand (nicely, of course ) that someone look at your chart and tell you how you have been measuring for the last five appointments. This might, at least, give you a little peace of mind. If this is off and the others weren't, chances are it's a fluke - you dropped, baby's in a weird positions, etc. My midwife says, one measurement is not enough to worry about. Good luck. Welcome to our DDC!!!
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#15 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 08:39 PM
 
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Hi there-I hope my story brings you some comfort. With DS, I measured 4 cm small my entire pregnancy. I was induced at 40 weeks due to low amniotic fluid levels-which they discovered with an ultrasound the day before DS was born. Now, they measured DS during that ultrasound and said he measured around 6lb 8oz, and my measurement was 36cm. The next day DS was born a very very healthy 8lb 2oz!!!! Needless to say, I was shocked-not only by his size in general, but by the margin of error that the ultrasound has! I have since learned and read that those machines can have error up to and over a pound either way. I think I had 5 ultrasounds during my last pregnancy. It was great to see DS all of those times, but it also caused me a lot of unnecessary worry. Please try to relax and remember that before we had all of this fancy equipment and so many tests and measures, that women had babies for thousands of years and just 'went with it'. My dear friend (who introduced me to Mothering) told me that and I can't tell you how much better I felt. I am CERTAIN that your baby is fine, you are fine, and that he or she is probably bigger than you think!

Good luck-I can't wait to hear how much baby weighs when he/she is born! I hope this helps.
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#16 of 23 Old 07-26-2006, 10:52 PM
 
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ditto everyone else on the measuring thing...I think I measured around 34 from 37 weeks on last time, baby was just very, very low.

AND, even if your baby is less than 6 lbs, you have 2 weeks left to go. Babies typically put on half pound-one pound a week at this stage, so theoretically by 40 weeks you could have a perfectly normal, average 7 pounder. Or, if you go late as is VERY common for first time mama's, baby has even more time to put on weight.

and, one more thing, plenty of babies are born right around 5-6 lbs at full term and are just fine, just small. Not sure why your doctor is making such a big deal.

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#17 of 23 Old 07-27-2006, 10:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Woo Hoo! I love this community!! Thanks for all of the support, everyone, especially those who have been through this before. She did assure me that late ultrasounds can be WAY off as far as estimating the size of the baby. I'm sure this is all just because he is SO low now. I will keep you all posted!! It means a lot to just have people say "don't worry"!

Oh, and what a small world, you fellow Massachusettians! Several of us really are practically neighbors!!!
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#18 of 23 Old 07-27-2006, 12:54 PM
 
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One more thought... did the same doctor/midwife measure you the time before? There can be a bit of variation between pracitioners so that's something else to consider. Otherwise, I agree w/ what everyone else has said & wish you support! Things certainly have a way of messing w/ your head in pregnancy (for me anyway!)!!!
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#19 of 23 Old 07-27-2006, 03:30 PM
 
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Hi there:

Quick story from 1st pg: At about 36 weeks, OB feels baby and says he is positioned transverse or breech. She orders u/s. At u/s, we learn baby is perfectly head-down, but measuring small (5-10 percentile). This leads to a bunch of alarmist b/s, "what-if-the-baby-is-small-because-of-low-fluid-and/or-failure-to-thrive", sending us to a neonatal specialist for another u/s, talking about early induction, etc. The neonatal specialist says yes baby is small, but no signs whatsoever that anything is wrong (heartbeat, fluid etc. are all fine)! We strongly resist continued hints from OBs about induction.

Ds was born in his own time, natural childbirth with no interventions - 6lb 3oz. He has been consistently <10th percentile his entire life. We bf'ed exclusively and didn't stress over his weight as long as he stayed on the same growth curve. At 20 months, he is the most healthy, active, fearless midget toddler you can imagine.

Moral of my story: don't panic - take the dire warnings with a grain of salt. Be careful of letting a cascade of interventions start! IMO, if there are no other signs of anything wrong besides a highly suspect measuring tape, there probably isn't.
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#20 of 23 Old 07-27-2006, 05:08 PM
 
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So, I had my home visit today - midwife measured me and I am measuring at 35 weeks. I say, is that because the baby is in my pelvis. She says, yep.
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#21 of 23 Old 07-29-2006, 02:53 PM
 
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i have been told by mv that you can measure 2 inches on either side and still be in normal range. I am 37 weeks and I am mesasuring 40. no concern. up untill this week I was measuring right on but I hadn't seen them for two weeks as I was away.
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#22 of 23 Old 08-01-2006, 10:25 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Just had my ultrasound appointment yesterday. Even though I was told repeatedly that US's can be off by as much as a pound either way, they estimate the baby's weight to be 7 lbs 3 oz... much better than my OB's guess of high 5's! The amniotic fluid also measured in at 15 cc's (right in the mid range... anything under 5 is worrisome.). So, yes, looks like I was measuring small just because he had dropped so much!

My internal revealed 2 cm dilation and 80% effacement, too, so he is definitely getting lower... hooray!

So, like you all said... nothing to worry about! Thanks for the support!!
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#23 of 23 Old 08-01-2006, 10:31 AM
 
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That's great!
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