Objective: To assess perinatal and long‐term outcomes for pregnancies complicated by early onset, severe fetal growth restriction with absent or reverse end‐diastolic flow velocity waveform (AREDF) in the umbilical artery.
Methods: A retrospective cohort study of 36 singleton pregnancies with AREDF when the estimated fetal weight (EFW) is less than 501 g at presentation.
Results: At presentation, the median gestational age and EFW were 24 (18–29) weeks and 364 (167–496) g, respectively. The median interval between presentation and live birth or diagnosis of intrauterine fetal death (IUFD) was 13 (0–60) days. Delivery was for IUFD in 19 cases (53%), fetal indications in 13 cases (36%) and maternal indications in four cases (11%). Caesarean section (CS) was performed for the 17 live births of which 10 (59%) were by classical CS. Of the total cohort, five infants survived to hospital discharge giving an overall perinatal survival rate of 14%. All survivors had short‐term morbidity. The cognitive function in four children was assessed as normal at two years of age. One survivor had developmental delay. None of the surviving children had any evidence of cerebral palsy.
Conclusion: The overall perinatal survival rate for pregnancies complicated by early onset, severe growth restriction with an EFW of < 501 g and AREDF is low. When delivery occurs for fetal indications, the majority of these women require classical CS. Short‐term neonatal morbidity is high though none of the survivors had cerebral palsy.