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Femur length too short at 36 weeks

(30 Posts)
Onwithnumber2 Thu 23-Feb-17 13:40:57

My midwife measured my fundal height at 35+6 and made it out to be 2 cm shorter than it had been at 33+6 so referred me for a growth scan.
The scan was yesterday and the baby's head circumference is measuring at 322mm (36th percentile), his abdominal circumference is 298mm (26th percentile) and his femur length is only 60mm. It's not even on the line, there's the diamond to show the measurement, a big gap and then the line starts.
The sonogropher measured his humerus length too and that was also short at 56mm but at least made it just onto the line at 7th percentile.

She said she would let the foetal consultant know the measurements and see what she wanted to do. Before we had even got down the road from the hospital we were called to say she wanted to see us on Monday for another scan.

Other than that we have had no information whatsoever, it's only from googling that I've found it could be maybe dwarfism or Down's syndrome? I can't really find anything except other message board posts though and I just wish I knew what we were looking at here. Do these measurements sound similar to anything anyone else has experienced?
I suffer from anxiety and I'm the kind of person who really has to arm herself with information for everything and the not knowing is really upsetting me. I know by Monday I'll know more but these next few days are going to be so hard.

steppemum Thu 23-Feb-17 15:21:03

I saw this earlier, and didn't reply as I have no idea. But I see no-one else has answered and I didn't want to leave you hanging, so bumping it for you and flowers

BendingSpoons Thu 23-Feb-17 15:26:20

That sounds really tricky for you. I'm no expert at all, but I know the scans can be inaccurate, as it can be hard to get measurements depending on the baby's position. I went for one and she measured the head circumference as really small but re-measured (with a lot if trouble!) and it was fine. I hope turns out to be fine, but I feel for you having all that stress.

JoJoSM2 Thu 23-Feb-17 15:32:48

I've found sth that might be of interest

Onwithnumber2 Thu 23-Feb-17 16:11:58

Thanks so much guys for bumping and adding your thoughts. It's good to know that your little one was fine after being remeasured BendingSpoons
She measured quite a few times, went round doing everything else then came back to it and did it again and got the same, but I'm just hoping the consultant remeasuring on Monday will find different results.

Sorry JoJo for some reason that link is blocked on my server, tried it through a proxy and it still said blocked so I can't access it. What does it say?

AyeAmarok Thu 23-Feb-17 16:13:45

Just wanted to say that with

AyeAmarok Thu 23-Feb-17 16:16:38

Sorry, baby DS posted that!

I had a scan where the sonographer thought some of the measurements were coming up too small, but when the consultant rescanned they were fine. I hope it's the same for you.

steppemum Thu 23-Feb-17 16:21:02

JoJo - that link seems to be to a library where you have to have permission to access?
Could you cut and paste the relevant bit?

Onwithnumber2 Thu 23-Feb-17 17:10:40

Thank you AyeAmorak that is reassuring, I really hope so too!

JoJoSM2 Fri 24-Feb-17 08:40:00

Oh, sorry about the link - it came up as I was googling. It's long and scientific... And I'm blocked from it too now :S Perhaps it'll come up for you if you google and go through the first few pages of results.

PotOfYoghurt Fri 24-Feb-17 08:49:51

No experience, just wanted to say I hope your scan on Monday goes well and the consultant can clarify things for you. I know how hard the unknown is flowers

MintyVixxxx Fri 24-Feb-17 11:28:38

I had a similar experience with one of my twins but his longbones measured short consistently through all my scans which were done under Fetal medicine unit. Was under the 5th centile throughout all of my pregnancy. I had a NIPT and then late amnio (for another reason) as they seemed to try and link it to all sorts of chromosomal disorders etc but everything came back clear. Then she asked if I had a family history of males being short. Yes, grandad, my dad and my brother are all short statute. There you have it. He's 7 weeks now and perfect. Just smaller than his twin sister. Have you looked back through your family history? Any history of short statute? Oh and Google is not your friend. Stay away if you can.

Also agree with pp and the measurements can be inaccurate. Same with weight, they reckoned my twin 2 was around 3lb just before my cs at 34 weeks and out he came at 3lb 14oz! confused

Onwithnumber2 Fri 24-Feb-17 20:05:01

I can't seem to find it Jojo but thanks for trying! After more googling (I know!) everything seems to be saying 60mm is more like the measurement of a femur at around 30-31 weeks, and femur length in dwarfism measures 4-5 weeks behind from around the second half of the second trimester or in the third trimester.
Of course there's every possibility his femur length isn't even 60mm! Could have been a completely inaccurate scan and on Monday hopefully he'll be measuring in line with the rest of his body and his arms and legs will be in proportion. Even though it's only my own research that I've got to go on, along with other people's experiences, I feel a little bit more in control of a situation I have no control over now. I just can't wait to get to Monday and find out more, hopefully I'll be updating you all that the first scan was a complete mess up.

Thank you so much for all your well wishes and anecdotes.

Katy75 Sun 26-Feb-17 15:18:12

Hello OP, we have recently been through similar with our daughter, who is now 10 days old.

Her long bones (femur and humerus) were short from 16 weeks, just below 5th centile, so off the line on the scan report and I know that is worrying and upsetting.

We were told short long bones can be a marker for Down's syndrome (but not in isolation) or dwarfism. We were also told that it can just be how baby is - eg, if family members are on the smaller side. Another cause can be placental insufficiency, which is what was causing it in our case. If the placenta is not working as well as it should baby will focus on growing her core and not on limbs.

We were at Kings in London and so were lucky to see lots of brilliant consultants. They explained that although short long bones can be a marker for Down's syndrome, it's a soft marker and if this is the only marker it's extremely unlikely to indicate Down's syndrome. They also explained that for Dwarfism they would expect to see a large head, and, as you say above, for limb growth to start normally and then slow during second trimester.

Our daughter is here and she is teeny (5lb, 13oz) but healthy and just gorgeous.

I hope your apt goes well tomorrow. Do let me know if I can help further.

Mrsknackered Sun 26-Feb-17 15:27:43

Hi there,
I posted this recently on a similar thread actually but just wanted to say with DS1 I had growth scans every 2 weeks, the whole pregnancy.
His head was either on 97th/98th percentile (can't remember now - over 4 years ago now) his femur length was on the 3rd percentile and abdomen was again in the 90's.
I had numerous consultant appointments and by the end of it had basically just accepted that my baby was either Down's syndrome or had a different disability that we hadn't yet identified. At my 38 week growth scan they made an estimate of his birthweight being just under 5lb.
I was supposed to be induced at 38+4 but bottled it and hung on in there til 42+1 and was induced due to meconium in waters.
Noah was born perfectly healthy at 7lbs. He did have very little legs and quite a large head! But he was absolutely gorgeous.
I still feel upset about the amount of fretting I went through in that pregnancy.
He's 4 years old and brilliant and I've just had DS2 who was induced for similar reasons - he too was 7lbs.
I am not a medic, but do have some experience and they have to be over cautious with these things. Please don't google it will drive you insane.
Hope all goes well with your appointment, best wishes flowers

AyeAmarok Sun 26-Feb-17 15:32:15

Really informative posts Katy and MrsK, thank you for sharing. Glad all is well with your DC.

DorothyL Sun 26-Feb-17 15:34:26

I went through similar and more when pregnant with ds.

He does have a form of dwarfism.

I hope your scan on Monday reassures you.

Onwithnumber2 Wed 01-Mar-17 06:51:04

Thank you so so much for all your updates, especially Katy and MrsK thank you for sharing.
Sorry I haven't updated sooner, it's been a total whirlwind but actually very similar to your experience Katy !
Monday we talked to the consultant and she said as we had suspected that the scan from last week was indicating chromosome abnormalities or an inactive/poorly functioning placenta so rather than doing another scan as they aren't conclusive she said I'd have to be induced that evening.
So I went home and put my little one to bed and collected my hospital bag, came back at 8 to be induced and he was born Tuesday morning at 10:18 at 5 pounds 6 oz.
No signs of any abnormalities! They said the placenta was definitely unhealthy and too small, wrong colour and texture so that must have been it, he does have little arms and legs but they have said he's not showing signs of dwarfism or downs or anything.

Thank you again SO much everyone for your support and advise.

stonecircle Wed 01-Mar-17 06:58:46

Crikey what a worrying time for you op, but thank goodness your DS is safely here. Congratulations! flowersstarbrewcake

NapQueen Wed 01-Mar-17 07:00:04

Oh wow! Congratulations OP and welcome to the world baby onwith glad to hear all seems well.

Onwithnumber2 Wed 01-Mar-17 09:30:01

Thank you!!

SoupDragon Wed 01-Mar-17 09:32:38


I read your thread but didn't comment so I'm glad I spotted the update smile

guiltynetter Wed 01-Mar-17 09:33:31

congratulations! so glad all is well.

Katy75 Wed 01-Mar-17 10:23:25

Congratulations!! Lovely news xx

Mrstumbletap Wed 01-Mar-17 10:50:56

Oh how lovely OP, So glad they spotted it and acted so quickly that's fantastic.
Are you home with your little arrival now?

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