Antenatal prediction of intraventricular hemorrhage in fetal growth restriction: What is the role of Doppler?

A. A. Baschat, U. Gembruch, R. M. Viscardi, L. Gortner, C. R. Harman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Objective: To evaluate relationships between neonatal intraventricular hemorrhage and altered brain blood flow in preterm growth-restricted fetuses. Methods: One hundred and thirteen growth-restricted fetuses (birth weight < 10th centile and umbilical artery pul-satility index > two standard deviations above gestational age mean) which delivered prematurely (< 34.0 weeks) were studied. Three expressions of altered brain blood flow were defined: 'brain sparing' = middle cerebral artery pulsatility index > two standard deviations below the gestational age mean, 'centralization' = ratio of middle cerebral artery/umbilical artery pulsatility indices (cerebroplacental ratio) > two standard deviations below the gestational age mean, and 'redistribution' = absent or reversed umbilical artery end-diastolic velocity. Intraventricular hemorrhage was graded after Papile (I-IV) by cranial ultrasound performed within 7 days of delivery. Results: Sixty-seven (59.3%) fetuses had brain sparing, 84 (74.3%) had centralization and 51 (45.1%) had redistribution. Fifteen (13.3%) neonates had intraventricular hemorrhage and were more likely to have a biophysical profile < 6, earlier delivery for fetal indications, lower cord artery pH, HCO3, hemoglobin, and platelets, a 10-min Apgar score < 7 and high perinatal mortality (5/15; 33.3%). No associations between intraventricular hemorrhage and brain sparing or centralization were identified. However, neonates with intraventricular hemorrhage had significantly higher umbilical artery pulsatility index deviations from the gestational age mean and a relative risk of 4.9-fold for intraventricular hemorrhage with redistribution (95% confidence interval, 1.5-16.3; P < 0.005). Multiple logistic regression revealed significant associations between intraventricular hemorrhage and a low 10-min Apgar score (r= 0.30,P < 0.005) and low hemoglobin (r= 0.28), gestational age at delivery (r= 0.25) and birth-weight centiles (r= 0.23) (P < 0.05). No Doppler parameter was identified as an independent contributor to intraventricular hemorrhage. Conclusion: While loss of umbilical artery end-diastolic velocity early in gestation significantly increases the risk for neonatal intraventricular hemorrhage, prematurity and difficult transition to extrauterine life remain the most important determinants of intraventricular hemorrhage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)334-339
Number of pages6
JournalUltrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Doppler
  • Fetal growth restriction
  • Intraventricular hemorrhage
  • Middle cerebral artery
  • Umbilical artery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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