What is IUGR?

Intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) is diagnosed when a baby appears smaller than expected, specifically if an ultrasound indicates the baby’s weight has dropped below 10% for their gestational age.

As a birth Doula, I have helped 20 couples bring their little ones earth side.  Within those 20 births, I had my first baby that was diagnosed with IUGR. Shared with permission, here is their story:

Client: My doctor wants to induce. (36+6 weeks)

Me: OK, what is your doctor telling you?

Client: The doctor said my baby will thrive better outside the womb than inside at this point. The last ultrasound showed my baby’s measurements had dropped below 10% for the gestational age according to my baby’s tummy measurements.

Me: OK, make sure you keep track of your kick counts and let me know when your induction will take place.

Client: That is what my doctor told me to do!

The couple’s induction was scheduled 3 days later. This couple remained calm and stuck to the part of their birth plan they could.  They received heavy pressure from the beginning to break the bag of waters. They listened to the doctor, asked for a moment to talk among themselves and decided to keep the water intact each time the doctor mentioned it.  The induction process was over a 36 hour period, in a hospital that had a cesarean rate of 40%. The couple was very determined to have a vaginal birth! As their birth doula, I was determined to help them achieve their vaginal birth! 41 hours after the start of their induction, they brought their baby earth side vaginally.  I am so proud of this couple working together and achieving their desired birth through this unforeseen obstacle. Their adorable baby was born healthy, under 6lbs, baby’s head appeared big and had an itty bitty little tummy and booty. Typical look for an IUGR baby.

After the placenta was delivered, growth restriction was very apparent.  The placenta was small, broken up and the cord was attached at the side, which is not normal.  The doctor took the time to educate us on what she saw and what actually caused the issue.


Placenta abnormalities is one reason a baby can have IUGR. Other reasons baby may not be getting enough oxygen or nutrients to grow in utero are:

*Medical condition such as preeclampsia or chronic hypertension

*Chromosomal abnormalities such as Down Syndrome or other physical birth defects

*Carrying multiples

*Smoking, Drinking, Drugs during pregnancy

*Certain Medications like anticonvulsants

*Severe malnutrition from the mom not eating properly or not gaining enough weight during pregnancy

*Women who live at higher altitudes

There doesn’t always have to be a medical reason for a small baby.  Sometimes parents who were born small have small babies. If you are diagnosed with IUGR, thoroughly talk to your health care provider about your options and potential outcome.  Share the information with your birth Doula so she can help educate, prepare and support your through your birthing experience.

I am accepting birthing couples in November, December 2016 and January, February, March 2017.

If you are interested in my birth Doula services, please contact me for your FREE meet and greet.

Happy Birthing,

Krisha Crosley CD(DONA), BBCD

Serenity Life Doula

512-801-2900 call/text

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Servicing the DFW, Texas and surrounding areas.