A new modality in nonstress testing: evaluation of beat-to-beat fetal heart rate variability.

Journal Article

Fetal monitoring equipment that provided accurate external measurement of the interval between each fetal heartbeat permitted the evaluation of beat-to-beat fetal heart rate (FHR) variability as part of routine nonstress testing. Nonstress tests (NSTs) were performed on 350 high-risk patients over a 12-month period. The beat-to-beat FHR variability and the reactivity of the last NST within 7 days of labor were analyzed in relation to the appearance of fetal distress during labor as indicated by late decelerations. Beat-to-beat FHR variability combined with nonstress testing was more predictive of subsequent fetal distress than nonstress testing alone. In all instances, complete loss of beat-to-beat FHR was followed by fetal distress during labor. Fetal distress was present in only 39% of labors following nonreactive NSTs. The inclusion of beat-to-beat FHR variability in nonstress testing can significantly aid in the detection of fetal compromise.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Lauersen, NH; Wilson, KH; Bilek, A; Rao, VS; Kurkulos, M

Published Date

  • November 1, 1981

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 141 / 5

Start / End Page

  • 521 - 526

PubMed ID

  • 7294079

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0002-9378

Language

  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States