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what are ppl's opinions on babies being born at 37wks? do u think they should change the definition of a full term pregnancy to 39wks?

(23 Posts)
bigfam Thu 08-Jan-15 09:44:31

I was just wondering how people felt about this? There's a lot of talk about changing the definition of a full term pregnancy, I think they may have even done it in America? Apparently babies born at 37wks face a lot more issues than those born 2 weeks later like breathing problems, jaundice and also in later life studies show they're generally smaller and less intelligent.
I find this a really intriguing subject as my 1st was born at 37+3, weighed 7lbz3oz and is now one of the tallest girls in her class and also clever as apposed to her brother born at 38+4 who has huge speech delay, learning issues and is tiny for his age! What do you feel about babies born at 37wks either spontaneously or through induction elcs? Love to hear people's views!

Number3cometome Thu 08-Jan-15 10:21:09

My son was born on his due date weighing 9lb, my daughter was born by ELCS (pre-eclampsia) at 38 weeks and had no problems at all.

My daughter is now 7 years old and has remained on the 95th centile for height. She has the reading age of a 12 year old and is incredibly bright - she certainly runs rings around me!

The only thing I would say is my daughter does tend to get hacking bad coughs - I do not smoke and she was breastfed until 10 months. I can only put this down to being born a teeny bit early? she was also jaundice but I was on beta blockers.

My niece was born at 37 weeks (sister had OC) and she was absolutely fine - a bonny 7 1/2lb.

I have heard of 40+weekers being small and getting sick, so I guess it is down to how the individual baby grows in the womb, the state of the placenta etc.

I am expecting DC3 and again very likely to have a 38 week baby, I would like to hold on to 39 if possible so will see what the difference is.

Both of mine were born by CS which I have heard can make a difference to lung function.

Letmeeatcakecakecake Thu 08-Jan-15 10:59:33

I can only speak from experience but my 37 weeker was 7lb 5oz, no difficulty at all, intelligent, tall, ect!

Ridingthestorm Thu 08-Jan-15 11:06:47

Mine was born at 39+5 weeks but always suspected they had the dates wrong by a number of days (original date was a week later until the 12 week scan - DS was long that was all!) so would be about 38 weeks in reality. He was 6lbs 6oz and is on the 91st for height (between 50th and 75th for weight) and hitting his milestones as expected.
I honestly think it is down to genetics, environmental factors throughout the pregnancy and the health of the mother and the placenta that will affect the outcome of a baby born at 37 weeks.

ChatEnOeuf Thu 08-Jan-15 11:09:45

My DD was 37+1 (though 36+4 by dates) and was fine. Little at delivery but not so much so that she needed any extra input. Fed well, too smart for her own good, and a very average size for her age now. No issues with jaundice and no breathing problems.

Working with babies, I can't say I've noticed a significant difference between 37-8 weekers and 39-40. Certainly the smaller ones are more prone to feeding, jaundice and temperature control issues - but that is true even if born at 40 weeks and small.

nemo81 Sat 10-Jan-15 05:51:52

I had a baby at 37 weeks, she weighed 5lb 9oz and was tiny. We were able to come home the same day but she is still small now.

My brother was born at 37 weeks and weighed nearly 7lb, he was in SCBU for 3 weeks due to breathing problems but is now over 6ft tall!!

twittertotter Sat 10-Jan-15 06:31:57

Dd1 born at 37 weeks and was 8 lb 10. Now 5 and has been on the 91st percentile for height and weight since birth.

No issues. Great feeder and sleeper... grin

DropYourSword Sat 10-Jan-15 06:42:41

I think it's dangerous to bring forward the definition to 39 weeks instead of 40 weeks, because the knock on effect will mean intervention is started before it's required. There would be inductions starting at k39+1 for 'post dates'. Cascade of intervention ensues.

LIG1979 Sat 10-Jan-15 06:45:30

Mine was born naturally at 38+0 weeks at 6 lb 4. She was small till about 18 months but now is average height but still very slim. She met all her milestones on time/early so no issues. I don't feel she was early but was ready at 38 weeks. Another friend had both hers at 37 weeks and they were both fine she just cooks babies quicker.

I think the 37 to 42 weeks takes into account that they all take slightly different times to cook. That said I think inducing or having a cs at 37 weeks is a different matter because that specific baby may not be ready at that point. (But that is a question for the doctors about the risk of getting the baby out early vs the risk of keeping it in the mother.)

Notmymonkeys Sat 10-Jan-15 07:18:40

I think there's a big difference between a baby born spontaneously at 37/38 weeks at the end of a healthy pregnancy, and one who is born via induction or c-section because of medical issues. That baby may not have been 'ready' to be born for another month or so.

bigfam Sat 10-Jan-15 07:46:17

I do agree that if a baby is born spontaneously at 37/38weeks that it's mums body knowing her baby is ready! But then again if its a genuine medical issue and baby has to be born there's not a lot that can be done.

bettybyebye Sat 10-Jan-15 07:52:57

My DS was born spontaneously at 37+2 - weighed 6lb 3oz but no breathing issues or jaundice or anything. He was small until around 3 months old when he had a huge growth spurt and has been on the 99th centile for height and weight ever since. Definitely depends on each individual experience

ShadowSuperNova Sat 10-Jan-15 07:53:19

Have you got any links about these issues 37 weekers face or links to these later life studies?

Stillwishihadabs Sat 10-Jan-15 07:55:43

I agree completely. Some women/babies are just ready I have even known a few born 35-37 good size no problems. But a c-section at 37 weeks is different and babe may have problems.

Stillwishihadabs Sat 10-Jan-15 07:57:42

Google epicure study. Also I think there was an article in achieves of disease of childhood about 2 years ago about "near term" infants will look it up.

Chasingsquirrels Sat 10-Jan-15 07:57:49

Mine were started spontaneous late evening on 36+6, ds1 was a slightly longer birth and was born in the early hours of 37+0, ds2 was v quick and was born just before midnight on 36+6.
Both were approx 7lb at birth.

Ds1 soon reached 95+ percentile for weight and height and stayed there and is v intelligent.
Ds2 stayed small, no idea on percentiles but skinny and smaller although at around 8 caught up with his class. He is bright, but not as much so as DS1.

Eastpoint Sat 10-Jan-15 07:58:27

My dcs were all born after 41 weeks, 2 were 8lbs 4 oz, the other 8lbs 2 oz. They all dropped percentiles and dc2 & dc3 were generally around 9% percentile until teens. Small numbers of self selecting samples do not provide sufficient data.

Titsalinabumsquash Sat 10-Jan-15 08:01:36

I thinks it matters about the type of delivery too, I was offered an induction at 35 weeks of c-section at 39 for this baby I'm carrying.

My consultant said that the physical passing through the birth canal and out squeezes any fluid from a babies lungs where as lifting them out through a c-section incision doesn't do they're much more likely to experience breathing difficulties.

OrangesJuicyOranges Sat 10-Jan-15 08:22:02

I'm having a csection this week at 37weeks because I have cholestasis. I understand that babies miss out on the 'squeezing' of natural labour. Why don't the doctors do some kind of massage/squeezing that mimics this?

ShadowSuperNova Sat 10-Jan-15 08:22:05

I googled epicure study.

That seems to be about babies born extremely prematurely (22 - 26 weeks), so at a glance doesn't seem really relevant to the issues or long term outcomes of babies born at 37 weeks.

bigfam Sat 10-Jan-15 08:27:36

If u do a Google search for babies born at 37wks there's loads of info x

ToriB34 Sat 10-Jan-15 08:31:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Jaffakake Sat 10-Jan-15 08:34:36

I think that every woman has her own 'cooking time'. I know women with multiple children born in the same week of gestation as each other.
Last time I went to 42 weeks, ds didn't appear 'over cooked' rather just cooked enough. So I'm now a bit nervous about having an elcs at 39 weeks, a whole 3 weeks early - something I'll be discussing with my consultant.

Therefore until they do more research into this (how they'd ever be able to tell each women's cooking time I have no idea!) a definition from 37 weeks will be of help to some.

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