Customised charts (GROW) delineate the Gestation Related Optimal Weight for each baby, by
- adjusting for characteristics such as maternal height, weight, parity and ethnic origin
- predicting the growth potential by excluding pathological factors such as smoking and diabetes
- improve the antenatal detection of fetal growth problems
- avoid unnecessary investigations and
- reduce anxiety by reassuring mothers when growth is normal.
Literature summarising the evidence for customised charts is available on the literature page.
The charts are recommended by the UK Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) and The Royal Dutch Midwifery Association (KNOV).
The effectiveness of any method used in fetal growth surveillance can be compromised if protocols for standardised fundal height measurement and referral for further investigation are not followed. The Perinatal Institute offers training prior to implementation of customised charts into clinical practice.
In the UK, GROW is provided as part of the comprehensive growth assessment protocol (GAP). For further details, see www.perinatal.org.uk/GAP
Internationally, the charts are provided through GROW-service as web based software which can be used either as a stand alone application, or integrated with primary or secondary maternity information systems to avoid double entry, and minimise the risk of entry errors.
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