Ultrasound derived fetal growth curves for a Jamaican population.


The objective of this study was to develop fetal growth curves and percentile growth charts for a Jamaican population. Four hundred and ninety-nine Jamaican women of African origin were enrolled in a prospective study from the antenatal clinic of the University Hospital of the West Indies, Kingston, Jamaica. Serial ultrasound scans were performed between 14 and 37 weeks gestation to measure fetal growth. The ultrasound measurements performed were biparietal diameter, head and abdominal circumference and femoral length. A total of 2574 ultrasound scans were performed on the 499 women (mean 5.2 per woman). From these data, centiles for fetal growth curves for the four fetal measurements were constructed and percentile tables were created for a Jamaican population. Birthweight varies between ethnic groups and, therefore, so must fetal growth rates. At present, fetal growth in Jamaica is assessed using standards which are based on data derived from Caucasian populations. Fetal growth curves using data from this study would more accurately identify a fetus that is at risk and hence, provide information which could improve obstetric care. These new growth curves should provide data, which will improve obstetric decision making.


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