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Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol. 2006 Mar 1;125(1):54-8. Epub 2005 Jul 27.

Intrauterine growth restriction at term: induction or spontaneous labour? Disproportionate intrauterine growth intervention trial at term (DIGITAT): a pilot study.

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  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Academic Hospital Maastricht, The Netherlands.



To test the hypothesis that in pregnancies with a clinically suspected growth restricted foetus at term, induction of labour is as safe as expectant management, and does not lead to increased obstetrical interventions or perinatal morbidity.


In one obstetric centre, 33 women with a clinically suspected growth restricted foetus at term were randomly allocated after stratification for parity to either induction or to expectant management. Obstetric and neonatal outcome variables were compared.


There was a lower gestational age at labour (median 38(0) weeks versus 40(1) weeks) with a corresponding tendency to lower birth weight (mean 2428 g versus 2651 g), and a reduced need for ante partum medical surveillance, in the induction group. No significant differences in obstetrical interventions (25% versus 24%) and neonatal morbidity rates (50% versus 35%) were found.


A larger multicenter study with a sufficient power and long-term follow-up to decide the best policy for the term growth restricted foetus is feasible.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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