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Old 08-29-2013, 04:57 PM   #1
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At what point is a baby really too big?

I'm usually the first person to start preaching and lecturing about how babies don't typically grow "too" big. Ultrasound weight estimates aren't dependable. OBs are c-section happy. Most women can vaginally birth a 10+ lb baby. I get all that. People do have 16 pound babies though. That's obviously too big. Where do we draw the line?

I ask because I'm carrying a very big baby this time around. I'm a little nervous. This will be my 3rd birth. My first, DS, was 8lbs 8oz at 42+2. My second, DD, was 8lbs 12oz at 40+0. Today, I'm 36+2 with my third. I've been measuring a couple of weeks ahead with this pregnancy. I never measured ahead with the other two. This baby just feels big to me.

I went in for my 36 week appointment with my midwife this morning. The baby's heartrate was 198 on the office doppler. They immediately did an ultrasound. The baby was crazy active through the ultrasound and his heartrate ranged from 165-198. The ultrasound weight estimate was 8lbs 9oz. His head and stomach are both measuring 41+3.

They sent me over to the hospital for additional monitoring, bloodwork, and IV fluids. In the end, they sent me home and said that they think I was dehydrated and that he was just extra spunky and got his heartrate up with all of his activity. I don't know what to make of it all. I'm having contractions every 7 minutes or so. They aren't hard, but they are consistent. I'm 2cm dilated and 70% effaced.

I kind of have a feeling that he's coming sooner than later. If that's the case, his size is irrelevant. I can push out an 8lb kid. I didn't even tear with either of my other two. What if I go another month though? His head measures 41+3! How much bigger could it possibly get? At what point does it become irresponsible not to induce? I don't want to have a 12lb baby!

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Old 08-29-2013, 05:10 PM   #2
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Re: At what point is a baby really too big?

Is it possible your dates are off? Big baby, early contractions, etc all indicate that possibility.

How big is too big all depends on the woman. My mother has had a woman deliver vaginally no tears a 12lb baby. Then another woman with a 7lber could not deliver without an episiotomy. The last one was stuck until a small cut. Then baby just slipped right out. She really, truly just could not stretch sufficiently. So really that is very hard to answer for you as too big varies from woman to woman.

My sister is 5' 3" with average bone structure. She delivered without tears a 10lb 13 lb baby at home.
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Old 08-29-2013, 05:31 PM   #3
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Don't trust late term measurements. Ever.

They are a guideline and work best when done over periods of time.

They can be off by 2 pounds and over 2 week measurements.

I wouldn't worry about it.

Fwiw they said my 35 weaker was 4 pounds 1 ounce. She was born the next day at 6 pounds 1 ounce. They said she had iugr for 10 weeks and with many ultrasounds. She didn't have iugr at all. She was huge for a 35 weaker and this was the highest rated Peri in our state.

Then with my 7th baby my regular ob measured her at 8 pounds 12 ounces at 39 weeks. She was born later that night and was 8 pounds 13 ounces.

You just never know. Relax and let nature do its thing.
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Old 08-29-2013, 05:43 PM   #4
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Re: At what point is a baby really too big?

From my understanding, big babies are a worry if mom has GD. This is because the shoulders get huge and the baby could get stuck (shoulder dystocia). If the baby is just generally large the risks are lower. This isn't to say there are no risks if your baby is really big, there is definitely still a higher chance of SD. That being said, I delivered a 9.9 pounder with a nuchal arm in 2 pushes, no tears :-)

ETA: I would avoid any starch or sugar from now until the birth. Also get as much exercise as possible. These two things combined may prevent he baby from getting much bigger

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Old 08-29-2013, 08:44 PM   #5
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Re: At what point is a baby really too big?

I wouldn't induce for a suspected large baby without some other independent reason (for example, uncontrolled GD) for all the reasons others have already raised.
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Old 08-29-2013, 08:59 PM   #6
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Re: At what point is a baby really too big?

Not that I would want to do this, but I've had 2 friends deliver 12 pound babies. Over that I think is too big! Personally, I would try not to worry. My biggest was also my earliest, and I'm glad I didn't know that beforehand (he was 9.2 lbs. at 38 weeks). I also agree that the measurements could be off. My SIL recently had a baby, and a late u/s said he'd be at least 10 lbs. she was induced, ended in a c/s, and had an 8 lb. baby...
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Old 08-29-2013, 09:02 PM   #7
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Re: At what point is a baby really too big?

By the way, one of my friends I mentioned recently had her 3rd baby, and his name is Joshua Daniel!
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Old 08-29-2013, 09:02 PM   #8
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I delivered a 10lb 1oz baby with no problems, she weighed about 8lbs in a 37week scan.
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Old 08-30-2013, 12:50 PM   #9
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As long as you don't have GD, the fact that you have successfully delivered two babies before is a good indicator that you will do the same this time.

I agree with a pp that you should never trust term weight estimates!
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Old 08-30-2013, 01:03 PM   #10
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Re: At what point is a baby really too big?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetest View Post
As long as you don't have GD, the fact that you have successfully delivered two babies before is a good indicator that you will do the same this time.

I agree with a pp that you should never trust term weight estimates!
Absolutely!
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