The Normal Fetal Pancreas

Zvi Kivilevitch*, Reuven Achiron, Sharon Perlman, Yinon Gilboa

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives: The aim of the study was to assess the sonographic feasibility of measuring the fetal pancreas and its normal development throughout pregnancy. Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional prospective study between 19 and 36 weeks' gestation. The study included singleton pregnancies with normal pregnancy follow-up. The pancreas circumference was measured. The first 90 cases were tested to assess feasibility. Results: Two hundred ninety-seven fetuses of nondiabetic mothers were recruited during a 3-year period. The overall satisfactory visualization rate was 61.6%. The intraobserver and interobserver variability had high interclass correlation coefficients of of 0.964 and 0.967, respectively. A cubic polynomial regression described best the correlation of pancreas circumference with gestational age (r = 0.744; P <.001) and significant correlations also with abdominal circumference and estimated fetal weight (Pearson r = 0.829 and 0.812, respectively; P <.001). Modeled pancreas circumference percentiles for each week of gestation were calculated. During the study period, we detected 2 cases with overgrowth syndrome and 1 case with an annular pancreas. Conclusions: In this study, we assessed the feasibility of sonography for measuring the fetal pancreas and established a normal reference range for the fetal pancreas circumference throughout pregnancy. This database can be helpful when investigating fetomaternal disorders that can involve its normal development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1997-2005
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Ultrasound in Medicine
Volume36
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2017

Keywords

  • fetus
  • obstetric ultrasound
  • pancreas
  • sonography

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