Letter to the Editor Letter to the Editor|Articles in Press, 100891

Maternal awareness of decreased fetal movements to prevent stillbirth: no benefit

Published:February 07, 2023DOI:
      Fetal movements are a positive sign of healthy development and indicate that the fetus is growing in both size and strength. Women are often taught by their health care provider to count the number of movements in a set amount of time in late pregnancy. Decreased fetal movements (DFM) can be a warning indicator of potential fetal impairment or risk, and therefore, warrants further evaluation, for example, by electronic FHR monitoring and an ultrasound scan. Recently, Mrcog et al.1 compared rates of abnormal ultrasound findings reflective of fetal compromise in women presenting with DFM and gestational matched controls in the third trimester. In the study cohort comprised of 1,466 cases and 2,207 controls, they found that the frequency of abnormal ultrasound findings are not increased in women with DFM compared to controls. The value of an ultrasound scan to identify infants at risk of stillbirth or adverse neonatal outcomes in women reporting DFM in their study is not observed. There was no difference in neonatal morbidity, mortality or stillbirth rates between the two cohorts.
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