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Head Circumference?

(25 Posts)
Rohan Tue 26-Aug-08 21:56:43

What's the average head circ for a newborn? Was your baby's head measured and what was their circ? Does it make a difference to the birth? And does it generally follow high birth weight-large head circ and vice versa? And do big heads run in the family?

Just idle wonderings really, having just read something that made me wonder. I have a big head (I ride horses so get measured for hats quite often ;)) and I think my DD had a big head from what I've just read, bu I'd be interested to hear some other measurements.

What a topic

thisisyesterday Tue 26-Aug-08 21:58:46

ds1 was 36.5cm
ds2 was 38cm

I have no idea if it makes a difference to the birth because I've never ahd one with a smaller head but it bloody hurt when they crowned I can tell you

Thankyouandgoodnight Tue 26-Aug-08 22:04:51

DC1 32.5cm weighed 7lbs 10 oz
DC2 37.5cm weighed 9lbs 4 oz

DC2 was easier to birth - no pain at all. Both waterbirths and no tears or grazes with either of them.

i think about 35cm-both of them. one was 8 8 and one was 8 13

berolina Tue 26-Aug-08 22:08:17

ds 35.5cm at 38 shock weeks, ds2 33.5cm at 41 weeks. Both 6-pounders, both have 50th-centile head circs now despite 2nd-centile heights/weights. They were both ventouse deliveries, for different reasons not directly related to head size.

thisisyesterday Tue 26-Aug-08 22:09:55

oh I didn't add weights:

ds1 36.5 cm head- 9lb 1oz
ds2 38cm head- 9lb 5 oz.

PrettyCandles Tue 26-Aug-08 22:17:28

AFAI can recall, only ds1 had his head circ measured at birth, and despite being a larger than average baby (8lb10oz), he had a smaller than average head circ (I don't recall the measuremnt).

From looking at othr babies, and from scan measurements, all my childrn were larger than avrage at birth, but with smaller than average or averag size heads.

TuttiFrutti Tue 26-Aug-08 22:17:49

Yes, I think it makes a big difference to the birth, much bigger than weight. And yes, big heads do run in families.

My dd's head was 38cm at 39 weeks, weighing 7lb 8oz. Ds's head was the biggest the hospital had seen for 2 years but I don't know the exact measurement. He was a bigger baby at 9lb 8oz.

Both were c-s. A midwife told me if I had birthed ds naturally I would have had a 4th degree tear.

Rohan Tue 26-Aug-08 22:36:49

My DD was slightly smaller than average at 7lb5 and her head was 38cm which seems on the larger side of normal now I've seen some of these.

Guess my big head does run in the family lol

cat64 Tue 26-Aug-08 23:03:13

Message withdrawn

DontNeedAnything Tue 26-Aug-08 23:06:40

but Tutti frutti I think that if you had birthed naturally the head circumfrance wold have been smaller as teh plates of the skull squish around as the baby passes through teh birth canal. A head circumfrance at birth is different to one at 2d I think, and on that same note I would expect that a head circumfrance from a VB would be different to one from a cs.

I am only guessing though.

fatzak Tue 26-Aug-08 23:16:25

We are a family of big heads - in fact one of my first memories is of getting a t shirt stuck over my head in Woolworths in Lytham grin

DS1 had an average sized head when he was born, but it soon shot off the centiles to the point where we were referred to a paediatrician. It soon averaged out, but even now at 5, he wears hats for 12year olds and our 3 year old needs 7 year old stuff!!

PrettyCandles Tue 26-Aug-08 23:19:44

Yes, that's rght. A friend had a cs after a vb, and when she commented on the differnce in size and shape of her dcs' heads (the cs baby had a bigger, rounder head than the vb baby, despite being similar weights and having similar scan measurements) the mw said exactly what DNA said.

findtheriver Wed 27-Aug-08 08:47:02

ds wasnt the heaviest of my babies but had a huge head! And yes, the crowning was agony !!

InTheDollshouse Wed 27-Aug-08 09:36:40

DD had/has a small head circumference, but I think it was her broad shoulders that caused the tear.

Anchovy Wed 27-Aug-08 09:53:34

I think it is very hereditary.

My DS weighed 8lbs2oz but had a whopping head: I think it was 39cms. I had to keep getting rescanned from about 35 weeks to check on it as a large head can be indicative of other issues/problems, although it wasn't in our case, thankfully. Like someone else on this thread, he was one of the largest or the largest they had seen in that hospital that year <my child is a winner at something emoticon>

I had to have a C section (as well as DS having a whopping head, I am reasonably small) - Ds never descended/engaged and although it is possible that babies engage only very shortly before birth, my obstetrician said that it was extremely unlikely in my circumstances, when the reason he wasn't engaging was probably his head size anyway. On the plus side, I had an extremely relaxed planned c-section at 40 weeks, as there was no medical emergency at all, and it was all very calm and happy. DS was so highly wedged in (because he hadn't descended at all) he had to be physically pushed from the top by the anaethetist while being pulled by the obstetrician.

Anyway DH has a mahoosive head. Fortunately its not detectable to the naked eye, but he has to get motor bike helmets so we know. Apparently when he was a child his head was so big that the school uniform shop did not stock his cap size and used to have to order one specially from the suppliers. At Christmas, the crowns in crackers sort of perch on the top of his head like a dainty little coronet!

lulumama Wed 27-Aug-08 09:55:53

DS was born 39 + 1 with HC of 35 cm and weight of 7 lbs 13

DD was born 40 weeks with HC of 33 , or was it 32? and weight of 7lbs 8

DS was em c.s and DD was VB so can;t really compare, but despite their similar weights DD was much more petite than DS and continues to be so.

traceybath Wed 27-Aug-08 09:58:38

Both my DS had giant heads. Can't remember the circumferences but both on 98th centile where as weight on 25th.

Both c-sections - first emergency and second elective. I'm small as well but DH has large head and very tall.

Heartmum2Jamie Wed 27-Aug-08 10:47:36

DS1 was born at 41+1 at 8lb 1oz and a HC of 37cm and yes, it bloody well hurt and I needed an episiotomy, but not because of the HC, but becasue he was born with a hand up by his head

DS2 was born at 39+5 at 7lb 13oz and a HC of 35cm, a fast, natural and easy labour & delivery. The most painful part was the "ring of fire" (crowning), but it doesn't last long, lol!

So far, scans show that this babys HC is smaller than average and certainly smaller than my other 2, but he has a bigger belly, lol! I will know more on Tuesday when I have another scan to check the heart and growth.

eidsvold Wed 27-Aug-08 11:01:14

all my dds have big heads BUT dd2 was off the charts - literally way off the charts - her head circumference just kept going straight up. We had to keep watch on her head. By 2 1/2 - 3 she had finally grown into her head!!!

TuttiFrutti Wed 27-Aug-08 11:40:47

Dontneedanything and PrettyCandles, thanks for the info. I had seen photos of the difference in head shape between vb and cs babies but had forgotten until you just reminded me!

But I think some head circumferences are just too big for any type of natural birth, at least without massive damage to the mother. Anchovy, like you my ds never engaged, even after a whole day of back-to-back contractsons from induced labour.

Both I and my dh have huge heads and have problems buying hats! Both of us were born by difficult forceps deliveries.

dereelicte Wed 27-Aug-08 11:45:18

Both DH and I have average sized heads. DD had an average sized head, and I had a long labour and a 2nd degree episiotomy which also tore. DS was huge (99th centile for weight and head circ...I can't remember the actual measurement), and I had a 2nd degree tear. However, the labour was v quick and easy, and the tear was prob caused by a v v rapid pushing stage. He shot out!

PinkyDinkyDooToo Wed 27-Aug-08 15:08:21

DS1 - 35cm - 7lb 12oz
DS2 - 36cm - 8lb 1oz

Interestingly where my SIL lives they no longer measure babies heads when born.

herbietea Wed 27-Aug-08 15:12:27

Message withdrawn

lauraloola Wed 27-Aug-08 19:33:56

DD 34cm, 7lb 1oz born 1 day early.

We were told she was going to be big - Yeah right!!

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