Risk for girls can be adversely affected post-term due to underestimation of gestational age by ultrasound in the second trimester
2015 (English)In: Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica, ISSN 0001-6349, E-ISSN 1600-0412, Vol. 94, no 12, 1373-1379 p.Article in journal (Refereed) PublishedText
Introduction. Post-term pregnancies are associated with greater risks for mother and child. Accurate determination of gestational age is necessary for safe care. Female fetuses have been shown to be smaller than males at the time of second-trimester ultrasound (US) examination, leading to underestimation of their age and, potentially, greater impacts of perinatal complications in post-term girls than in post-term boys. The purpose of this study was to investigate the sex ratio of post-term births and differences in perinatal complications (stillbirth, low Apgar score, low birthweight, meconium aspiration and low umbilical artery pH) between post-term boys and girls according to dating method [second-trimester US and last menstrual period (LMP)]. Material and methods. Data from gestational week >= 39 to delivery of 13 338 singleton pregnancies between 13 February 2006 and 15 January 2014, were collected from the Obstetrix (R) (Siemens Healthcare) medical records system in Dalarna County, Sweden. Results. The neonatal male: female ratio increased with gestational age after week 40, as dated by US, reaching 1.69 in gestational week 42. This ratio remained 1 throughout gestation according to dating by the LMP. Post-term pregnancy increased the risks of meconium aspiration and low Apgar score, with no sex difference observed. Conclusions. US gestational dating indicated that more boys than girls were born post-term, whereas dating according to LMP revealed no sex difference. These results support the hypothesis that female fetuses are smaller than males, leading to underestimation of their gestational age, at the time of second-trimester US examination.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 94, no 12, 1373-1379 p.
Post-term pregnancy, sex difference, ultrasound dating, perinatal complications, fetal size
Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-274941DOI: 10.1111/aogs.12774ISI: 000367340800014OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-274941DiVA: diva2:897855