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Large for gestational age (LGA)

Definition

Large for gestational age (LGA) means that a fetus or infant is larger or more developed than normal for the baby's gestational age.

Information

Gestational age is a measure of the growth and development of the fetus in the uterus and the infant after birth. LGA refers to a fetus or infant who is larger than expected for the age and gender or with a birth weight above the 90th percentile.

The measurement is based on the estimated gestational age of the fetus or infant, compared with what is considered normal height, weight, head size, and developmental level for a fetus or infant of the same age and gender.

Common causes of a fetus or infant who is large for gestational age are:

  • Gestational diabetes
  • Prolonged pregnancy

A baby that is large for gestational age has a higher risk of birth injury and complications of low blood sugar after delivery.

References

Landon MB, Catalano PM, Gabbe SG. Diabetes mellitus complicating pregnancy. In: Gabbe SG, Niebyl JR, Simpson JL, eds. Obstetrics: Normal and Problem Pregnancies. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Elsevier Churchill Livingstone; 2007:chap 37.

Divon MY. Prolonged pregnancy. In: Gabbe SG, Niebyl JR, Simpson JL, eds. Obstetrics: Normal and Problem Pregnancies. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Elsevier Churchill Livingstone; 2007:chap 32.


Review Date: 8/4/2009
Reviewed By: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington, School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
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