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Baby appears to be hovering above 10th percentile line at nearly 36 weeks - reassurance please?

20 replies

Alwaysfindaworry · 25/10/2020 18:48

35+5 today and had a private growth and presentation scan. Head down, which is great, but estimated fetal weight at 4lb13oz.

A/c, h/c and f/l each hovered very slightly above the 10th percentile lines on their charts, (I'm not sure if they are modified for maternal BMI etc but I don't think so - although they did take my blue notes first so I suppose it's possible) but the overall estimated fetal weight is below 10th percentile on every online calculator I can see (including UK fetal medicine website)

For background, my DD was 7lb3 although measured around 20th centile at a growth scan at about 31 weeks if I remember right. She had a high nuchal translucency and we had a bit of worrying pregnancy as were referred for various tests ie chromosome microarray, fetal echocardiogram at the Evelina etc. We're very lucky as she was born very happy and healthy, although she was diagnosed after birth with a couple of very rare structural problems which will unfortunately need major surgery, although our surgeon is very reassuring and confident about the surgical plan

NHS sonographer felt that we should really be under fetal medicine due to previous pregnancy history, although 12 and 20 week scans seem normal this time round

I know growth scans can be notoriously unreliable, and also that 10th or above is ok, I guess I'm just worried that the measurements underestimate or that growth may tail off and nobody will be aware. EFW at 20 week scan was about 40th although femurs around 10th and fundal height has been exactly 50th at each midwife appointment so far. Scan did show plenty of fluid which was good

I'll mention it to midwife at 36 week appointment on Tues but wonder if she'll just explain that they don't take private scans into account and ask why I went (ironically for reassurance 😂)

So far been very lucky in pregnancy with normal blood pressure, normal BMI etc, planned pregnancy and have been very careful about nutrition and following the "rules" etc, particularly due to daughter's condition and worrying about it happening again

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Junjulaug · 25/10/2020 18:56

DD was tiny on all her scans and tiny when she was born 5 1/2 pounds.(we had lots of private scans) We had to get prem baby clothes. She went into 0-3 months at 3 months. She’s 9 now and is on 25th centile. If you can afford extra scans just get them done for peace of mind. I was repeatedly told DC2 was a whopper on scans -10-11 lbs. he was 7 1/2 lb, but was 3 weeks early. Hope all goes well for you x

Alwaysfindaworry · 25/10/2020 19:28

Thank you for your reply.. do you mind if I ask at what week your DD was born and how she is now?

I'm thinking about booking another at 38 as I think if there are concerns the clinic do contact NHS hospital etc to discuss so is worthwhile. They didn't seem concerned today as was just about at 10th by their calculations

I will also see what fundal height is on Tues and what midwife says

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Gunpowder · 25/10/2020 20:06

DD1 was on the 10th line. She was 6.11 and quite short but not skinny when she was born at 40+1. She’s always been the second smallest in the class but bounds around with loads of energy and is very healthy and perfectly proportioned. (She’s 8 now). Someone has to be small!

Speak to your midwife. There are no wrong questions but I don’t know if being on the 10th centile in itself is a worry.

Junjulaug · 25/10/2020 20:19

She was born at 39 weeks, spontaneous. Delivery was hideous, and she needed bottle top ups from day 2 as she kept dropping her blood sugar. We were in hospital 5 days, and all I did when we got home was sit and fed her as she would take an hour to feed and then would be hungry 2 hours later. She absolutely perfect now. As I said before she is smallish, but so areDH and I. In centiles she is bigger than her brother. I do appreciate how worrying it is to know you are having a small baby. I was regularly reduced to tears by well meaning midwives during both pregnancies.

Alwaysfindaworry · 26/10/2020 06:22

Thank you. I'm glad to hear she's doing so well now.

I have a feeling the midwife on Tues will be reassuring and just say as long as it's not below 10th it's fine, but in a way I'd rather she said we'd have a bit of monitoring as feel it does depend on whose chart we are looking at etc and it is obviously less than expected at 20 weeks, although I'm not sure how relevant that is

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Disillusionedsusan · 26/10/2020 06:38

My ds was born on the 9th at full term. As a pp says someone has to be there, that's how these measurements work. He's smaller than average but he doesn't know it. He's happy, energetic and actually pretty amazing all round!

BorisandHarriet · 26/10/2020 06:48

My DD was a bit under 5lbs when born at 37 weeks and has been on the 0.2 centile or similar most of her life. She did have a paediatric check up age 5/6 months as she was always a bit reluctant to drink much milk but was deemed to just be naturally petite. She’s now a teenager and still petite but totally in proportion. Think she’s still about second centile or something.

KoalasandRabbits · 26/10/2020 06:58

My DD measured small for dates in the 30 week plus tests - she was born at 37 weeks exactly and in 2nd percentile for full-term, 9th for prem babies but technically she was full-term so 2nd. Spent a week in NICU, she had jaundice but has been fine since and now 15 and 5 foot 6. She was 5lbs 5oz born. Hope all goes well for you.

Princessposie · 26/10/2020 07:02

My DD was tiny, below 10th. As long as they continue to track that line it’s fine. She’s 8 now and still tiny. After school weight check I had a letter from school nurse raising concerns and directed me to take her to the GP which I diligently did (along with the letter). I was laughed out of the surgery. She is never poorly, she’s super fit and to top it all off, I’m also tiny so as the GP pointed out, her size is extremely likely to be genetic. Please don’t worry OP Flowers

Alwaysfindaworry · 26/10/2020 11:23

Thank you for these reassuring replies! Fingers crossed all ok and just a little one. My Mum is quite short but most others in family tall or average so who knows. I think I was born at 6lb11 so not massive either

DD was born on 25th and tracked that for a while but now at 2 she's around 15th I think so little as well

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Alwaysfindaworry · 26/10/2020 11:24

I know that realistically rest and calories etc have nothing to do with it but I am very active all day so sometimes wonder if I need to rest more - it's a good excuse I guess to put my feet up occasionally 😂

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CressidaTheHeathen · 26/10/2020 11:27

I had to go to twice weekly growth scans with DD. They predicted her to be around 4lb. Gave birth 3 days later to a 6lb baby.

I don’t know anyone who has has accurate scan measurements, all the babies in my family were bigger than the hospitals thought!

Alwaysfindaworry · 27/10/2020 18:04

At today's midwife appointment looked like the bump measurement had dropped a line or two so in for NHS scan tomorrow afternoon. Hopefully blood flow etc will be ok

Feel a bit nervous but so glad it's all being looked into

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notafanoftheman · 27/10/2020 18:33

My DD was second percentile. She’s now 4 and bang on average, though quite a slight build. It’s genetic for us, her dad’s side are all short.

WooMaWang · 27/10/2020 18:48

There are 2 things. The unreliable nature of weight estimates based on scans (I was told DS3 was 8lb 13oz. He was 7lb 10oz).

Plus the percentile thing. It’s perfectly normal and healthy to be on the 10th percentile. It just means you are lighter than most of the population. It doesn’t mean anything is wrong in and of itself.

An adult man of c. 5’6 will be on the 9th percentile. But that just means he’s not talk. Not that there’s anything wrong. There are plenty of men that height out there.

Alwaysfindaworry · 27/10/2020 20:13

All true of course!

It's a little odd as DH and I both taller than average and have some very tall people in our families! Neither of us were very big babies, though

Agree measurements are often quite a bit out. Just seems like the growth has tailed off after being about average at 20 week scan and bump measurements after that also bang on average, then suddenly scan on Sunday showed 10th which is consistent with bump measurement today

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MinnieJackson · 27/10/2020 21:16

My son was born on the 4th percentile, 6lb 1oz, first pregnancy so only two scans. he's above average height and weight now and caught up really fast. I had terrible gallstone attacks when i was pregnant with him and literally couldn't eat any fat, I lost 35lbs so it wasn't unexpected I suppose. We were out the day after my c section, the first night he had to be put in a heat pad but he was fine. My other babies were small aswell, one on the ninth (6lb 4)/and one 25th I think (7lb) Flowers

Artesia · 27/10/2020 21:21

Just echoing PP, the scans are ridiculously unreliable for predicting weight. I was told DS1 was huge- at least 9.5lb. He was born at 42 weeks, 6lb 11. Try not to worry.

Sistedtwister · 27/10/2020 21:24

Dd was predicted to be a large baby and was born 5th percentile the midwife said she was perfectly petit . Had to buy tiny baby clothes etc because we had bought new born and bigger. By 7months she was 75 percentile. She's now 13 tall and very very muscular due to various sports. I really wouldn't worry too much. The scans only an indication and a small baby does not mean an unhealthy baby

EcoCustard · 27/10/2020 22:33

All 4 of my DC’s have measured on or below the 10th throughout pregnancies.
All were born tiny and SGA.
The tiniest was my 3rd dc who was born on the 0.2 centile at 39 weeks weighing 4lbs 10oz. She was estimated to be around 5.5lbs at 38 weeks. I had growth scans throughout my pregnancy and although measured small, was following a line and similar to my other two dc. She spent a few days in nicu, then transitional care with me. She weighed 4lbs 8oz on discharge but was feeding well after weight loss and doctors felt we would be do better at home. She is 3.5 now and although skinny and tall she is healthy, strong, and amazing.
Siblings were 5-5.5lbs and all healthy but tiny, all are thriving and all are taller than average, but skinny and low on the weight average.
I will add I had GD, normal bmi in first two pregnancies and slightly raised in the last two, average height. DH is 6”4, average build.
I found the percentiles caused a lot of worry and angst for what can be an unreliable method of measuring.

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