Clinical Edge

Summaries of Must-Read Clinical Literature, Guidelines, and FDA Actions

Can Uterine Artery Doppler Screening Predict SGA Babies?

Am J Obstet Gynecol; ePub 2017 Jul 13; Parry, et al

Early second trimester uterine artery Doppler studies were not a clinically useful test for predicting small for gestational age (SGA) babies, a recent study found. Nulliparous women with a viable singleton pregnancy were recruited during their first trimester at 8 institutions across the US. Participants were seen at 3 study visits during pregnancy and again at delivery and 3 indices of uterine artery Doppler flow were measured in the right and left uterine arteries between 16 weeks 0 days and 22 weeks 6 days’ gestation. Researchers found:

  • Uterine artery Doppler indices, birth weight, and gestational age at birth were available for 8,024 women.
  • Birth weight <5th percentile for gestational age occurred in 358 (4.5%) of the births.
  • Typical thresholds for the uterine artery Doppler indices were all associated with birth weight <5th percentile for gestational age; however, the positive predictive values for these cutoffs were all <15%.


Parry S, Sciscione A, Haas DM, et al. Role of early second trimester uterine artery Doppler screening to predict small for gestational age babies in nulliparous women. [Published online ahead of print July 13, 2017]. Am J Obstet Gynecol. doi:10.1016/j.ajog.2017.06.013.