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Can intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR) recur in a subsequent pregnancy?

Q: I am a 21 years old female. My first baby was born premature in the 32nd week of pregnancy and did not survive because of intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR). I want to conceive again. Can IUGR recur? How do I prevent such a situation?

A:If the cause of IUGR was detected (like high blood pressure/PIH, insulin dependent diabetes, antiphospholipid antibodies, smoking, antepartum hemorrhage, some medication you may be on etc), that needs to be taken care of before and during pregnancy. If no cause was detected for the IUGR (idiopathic), then the only way out is good diet before and during pregnancy, early and regular antenatal care. Take folic acid 1 mg daily for six months prior to next pregnancy, and that needs to be continued during pregnancy. Antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids (like eating fish) are also good to prevent IUGR. If during pregnancy the Doppler test of uterine artery shows high resistance to diastolic flow, then low dose aspirin (50 mg) daily will help.

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