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Keywords:

  • ultrasonography;
  • pregnancy;
  • randomized controlled trial;
  • childhood growth

Abstract

The study was performed to investigate any associations between routine ultrasonography during pregnancy and subsequent growth during childhood. A follow-up was carried out of children born to women who took part in two randomized, controlled trials of ultrasonic screening during pregnancy. From a total of 2428 eligible children, 2140 (88%) were followed up with measurements of growth at Norwegian maternal and child health centers. The body weight and height were recorded at birth and at 3, 6 and 12 months of age; and subsequently at 2, 4 and 7 years of age. A repeated-measures analysis of growth was carried out, stratified by maternal smoking in a subsample of 1201 children. No significant differences between ultrasound-screened children, and their controls, were found in mean body weight, or height, at birth and at all the subsequent visits to the health centers. However, the repeated-measures analysis of variance in the subsample indicated that growth from birth to 7 years of age differed significantly (p = 0.02) between screened and control children of mothers who reported smoking at the first antenatal visit. We conclude that children who were routinely exposed to ultrasonography in utero showed no statistically significant differences in growth during childhood compared to control children. Copyright © 1993 International Society of Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology