During your pregnancies, you may hear a lot of abbreviations. IUGR is a term for a restriction on the growth of the uterus.

If your baby is diagnosed with IUGR, this means their fetal weight is below the 10th percentile for gestational age or the birth weight is under 5 pounds, 8 ounces.

Less than the 10th percentile means the weight is less than 90 percent of all developing babies who are the same gestational age. IUGR happens in 10 to 15 percent of pregnancies. Causes of IUGR include fetal, maternal, “The baby’s uterus”l, or genetic factors.

A baby may still be born healthy even if it is growing slower or less developed than expected. IUGR can be prevented or treated with the help of your doctor.

If your doctor diagnoses your baby with IUGR, you can learn more about the different types of IUGR and what you can do during the pregnancy.

There are three types of IUGR.

  • Symmetric or primary. Babies born with this type have smaller internal organs. Almost 25 percent of all cases are symmetric IUGR. This type occurs earlier in pregnancy and may be due to a genetic disorder or infection.
  • Asymmetric or secondary. In this type, the abdomen is smaller while the head and the brain are regular in size. This kind of IUGR typically happens later in pregnancy. Issues like problems with the “The baby’s uterus” can cause it.
  • Mixed. This type is mainly seen in low or middle income countries where there are many risks of IUGR.

“The term SGA is small for a woman’s age during her pregnancies.”

SGA is when a baby’s weight is under the 10th percentile for the gestational age or a baby who is smaller than is typical after delivery.

There are differences between the two conditions.

IUGR is used to highlight the distress a baby is going through during their pregnancies. The main purpose of SGA is to show how big the baby is, and not to show any development issues.

The baby being smaller than expected during the pregnancy and birth is the most common symptom of IUGR. A baby with IUGR may show some symptoms at birth.

  • Appears to be very thin.
  • Pale or thin skin.
  • breathing difficulties
  • feeding issues
  • low blood sugar.
  • Body temperature issues.
  • appears yellow (jaundice)
  • infection (sepsis)

IUGR can happen for many reasons. It may have a number of causes.

There are conditions that may be linked to causes.

IUGR can happen at any time during pregnancy. Doctors believe that if it happens at the beginning of a pregnancy, it is most likely linked to a genetic cause or an issue with the “The baby’s uterus” or umbilical cord.

The “The baby’s uterus” delivers oxygen and nutrients to your growing baby. Issues that slow this flow can lead to growth and development problems.

IUGR can be prevented most of the time. If you have a low body weight or were under nourished during your pregnancies, you may be at increased risk of your baby having IUGR.

Other factors that may increase the risk of IUGR include:

At the beginning of your pregnancy, your doctors will calculate the gestational age of your baby using The baby is being examined by a doctor and the first day of your last menstrual cycle. This is important for diagnosing IUGR if it happens at the beginning of your pregnancy.

Your doctor will also determine the baby’s size by measuring your fundal height. This is the distance from your pubic bone to the top of your uterus.

Your doctor may weigh you at every prenatal appointment, too. If you’re having difficulty gaining weight, your baby may have a higher chance of developing IUGR.

“A doppler flow study is a scanning procedure that helps diagnose IUGR. The baby’s heart and other organs are measured. This test uses sound waves to create an image. Doctors use doppler flow studies to check the flow of the baby’s blood.”

Screenings for infections such as syphilis can help predict the risk of IUGR during pregnancy.

What can I do to help if my baby has IUGR?

  • A balanced diet is what you should eat. Ask your doctor or a food expert about the best foods for you and your baby.
  • You can stay hydrated by drinking lots of water.
  • Let your doctor know if you are taking any prescription drugs.
  • “Don’t smoke and avoid secondhand smoke.”
  • “Don’t drink alcohol at all.”
  • All recreational drugs should be stopped.
  • Follow up appointments are included in your regular appointments.

If quitting alcohol and nicotine is difficult, you should reach out to your doctor. They can give you resources to help you.

IUGR can be found early in the pregnancy, so managing it depends on how severe it is.

“The health of your baby and how far along the pregnancy is the most important factors for IUGR. Your doctor will keep an eye on your and your baby’s health.”

A baby can be monitored.

If IUGR is related to slow weight gain, weight loss, or poor diet while pregnant, your doctor may recommend meeting with a dietitian to address concerns about your nutrition and weight.

If there is a problem with blood circulation to the baby, you may need to stay in the hospital or be on bed rest.

In cases of severe IUGR where the baby is no longer growing or is not getting adequate nutrition and oxygen through the “The baby’s uterus”, your doctor may recommend a cesarean birth for early delivery.

Many babies with IUGR are small for their age, but they are otherwise healthy. If your baby is diagnosed with IUGR, your doctor will recommend the best treatment plan to prevent and manage any adverse effects.

Pre-Natal care is important for both you and your baby. Smoking or alcohol use during pregnancy can be risk factors for IUGR.

Babies may face long-term health issues if they have IUGR. Monitoring during and after the delivery is required if your baby is diagnosed with IUGR.