Thursday, August 11, 2011

Princess Preemie Primer - Intrauterine Growth Restriction

Every Thursday is Princess Preemie Primer Thursday. I will write about premature infants (mine included!). Topics include informative pieces, personal stories (mine and others), and anything I can think of in regards to premature babies and their supporting family and friends. If you are a parent of a preemie and would like to be featured, please email me at samanthap{at}mommytoaprincess{dot}com.

Intrauterine Growth Restriction (IUGR) is the measuring of a baby to be smaller than expected and is caused by a number of factors.  For us, I think it was a combination of preeclampsia (mine was severe) and possibly, malnutrition (I vomited daily during my first six months of pregnancy and lost more than 20 pounds). 

IUGR is a condition where the baby does not measure in size appropriately.  For us, Roxy was expected to weigh 2 pounds, 10 ounces at birth and actually measured 1 pound, 9 ounces. 

The affects on the baby are determined by a number of factors including the gestational age at birth, how long IUGR is present, and how severe the restriction is. 

Complications from IUGR are both short and long term.  Short term include issues maintaining body temperature and low blood sugar.  They tend to be jaundiced.  Roxy was treated for all three of these issues during her NICU stay.  Long term include developmental issues, obesity, high blood pressure, and type II diabetes.  We've been warned to keep an eye on Roxy for obesity and high blood pressure. 

If IUGR is detected during pregnancy, you will be monitored closely with ultrasounds and possibly asked to do "fetal kick counts."  In our situation, we had to deliver Roxy early because of the stress on her and on me due to severe preeclampsia. 

As with all possible pregnancy complications, it is important to attend every checkup with your physician, eat well, and rest.  If your baby has IUGR, moving your delivery from a small local hospital to a better equipped hospital with a NICU would be a great move. 

For more information about IUGR, please visit Baby Center where the information for this article was found.


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