Management of decreased fetal movements

Division of Epidemiology, Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Oslo, Norway.
Seminars in Perinatology (Impact Factor: 2.42). 08/2008; 32(4):307-11. DOI: 10.1053/j.semperi.2008.04.015
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Maternal perception of decreased fetal activity is a common complaint, and one of the most frequent causes of unplanned visits in pregnancy. No proposed definitions of decreased fetal movements have ever been proven to be superior to a subjective maternal perception in terms of identifying a population at risk. Women presenting with decreased fetal movements do have higher risk of stillbirth, fetal growth restriction, fetal distress, preterm birth, and other associated outcomes. Yet, little research has been conducted to identify optimal management, and no randomized controlled trials have been performed. The strong associations with adverse outcome suggest that adequate management should include the exclusion of both acute and chronic conditions associated with decreased fetal movements. We propose guidelines for management of decreased fetal movements that include both a nonstress test and an ultrasound scan and report findings in 3014 cases of decreased fetal movements.

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