The growth-restricted fetus is a fetus who fails to reach his growth potential and is at risk for perinatal morbidity and mortality. When a fetus has an estimated weight below the 10th percentile, in the absence of congenital anomalies and in the presence of a normal amount of amniotic fluid, Doppler velocimetry gives the most important information to differentiate the truly growth-restricted fetus from the fetus that is constitutionally small but otherwise normal. One area of debate and research is whether Doppler velocimetry can help in timing the delivery of the growth-restricted fetus. Data appear to support the use of ductus venosus velocimetry in deciding when to deliver, but randomized data on this point are still lacking.
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