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Obstet Gynecol Surv. 1989 Jul;44(7):544-55.

Dating through pregnancy: a measure of growing up.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut 06510.


The accurate estimation of gestational age is an essential part of pregnancy management, since the consequences of erroneous dating carry increased risks of perinatal morbidity and mortality. Ultrasonography offers a unique opportunity to objectively measure quantitative changes in growth increments of various fetal structures, as well as qualitative changes occurring near term which are indicative of fetal maturity. Therefore, dating through pregnancy is possible by the use of various parameters such as the crown-rump length, the trunk circumference, and the biparietal diameter in the first trimester; the biparietal diameter, the cerebellum, orbital distance, clavicular length, lengths of the long bones of the upper and lower extremities, and the foot length in the second and third trimesters; and the indices of maturity in the late third trimester such as colonic grading and epiphyseal ossification centers of the long bones of the upper and lower extremities. Using a combination of fetal biometry and maturity indices permit dating through pregnancy as a measure of growing up.

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