Intrauterine growth restriction

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Intrauterine growth restriction, abbreviated IUGR, is a common problem in obstetrics characterized by a small fetus. IUGR often shows up on requisitions for placentas.


Generally, it is subdivided into:[1]

  1. Symmetric IUGR.
    • Head in proportion to body.
  2. Asymmetric IUGR.
    • Head large in proportion to body - due to decreased abdominal growth.

Symmetric IUGR


  • Not associated with placental abnormalities - other than small mass.
  • Early event, i.e. early in gestation.


  • Chromosomal anomalies, others.

Asymmetric IUGR


  • Often associated with placental abnormalities.


  • Usu. abnormal vascular development of the placenta resulting in ischemia.

Various papers on IUGR and placental pathology

Histopathology/frequency in IUGR


IUGR not otherwise specified


Idiopathic IUGR

Not associated with placental abnormalities.[4]

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Roberts, DJ.; Post, MD. (Dec 2008). "The placenta in pre-eclampsia and intrauterine growth restriction.". J Clin Pathol 61 (12): 1254-60. doi:10.1136/jcp.2008.055236. PMID 18641412.
  2. Mardi, K.; Sharma, J. (Oct 2003). "Histopathological evaluation of placentas in IUGR pregnancies.". Indian J Pathol Microbiol 46 (4): 551-4. PMID 15025340.
  3. URL: Accessed on: 17 October 2013.
  4. Tomas, SZ.; Roje, D.; Prusac, IK.; Tadin, I.; Capkun, V. (Sep 2010). "Morphological characteristics of placentas associated with idiopathic intrauterine growth retardation: a clinicopathologic study.". Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol 152 (1): 39-43. doi:10.1016/j.ejogrb.2010.05.006. PMID 20627398.