Waveforms of the ductus venosus blood flow in normal human fetuses aged 8-38 weeks.

T. Y. Hsu*, C. Y. Ou, Shiuh-Yang Chang, B. H. Cheng, J. H. Chen, P. H. Hsu, W. L. Tsai

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

2 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: We attempted to establish normal Doppler flow velocity waveform patterns in the human fetal ductus venosus (DV), and also to establish a standardized measurement technique. METHODS: Ductus venosus blood flow was measured in a prospective study involving 545 fetuses aged between 8 and 38 weeks in utero, the mothers of whom received prenatal care in Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital in a 12-month period in 1998-1999. Several DV hemodynamic parameters were assessed, including peak systolic velocity (DVP), peak systolic/diastolic (S/D) ratio, time-averaged velocity (TAMX), maximum velocity during atrial contraction (DVM), pulsatility index (PI), Pourcelot's resistance index (RI), and fetal heartbeat (FHB). RESULTS: Technically acceptable ductus venosus blood flow velocity waveform patterns were collected from 490 of 545 pregnant women (89.9%). The mean +/- SD value for the peak systolic DV velocity during the time period of 8 to 38 weeks in utero was 0.33 +/- 0.11 meters/sec (m/s), the TAMX being 0.24 +/- 0.09 m/s. The maximum velocity during atrial contraction was 0.15 +/- 0.09 m/s, and the peak S/D velocity ratio was 2.5 +/- 1.01. The PI, Pourcelot's RI and fetal heart beat were, 0.67(+/- 0.21), 0.64 (+/- 0.11), and 163.3 (+/- 18.82 bpm), respectively. Significant increases in DVP, TAMX, and DVM with advancing gestational age were established, and decreases in PI, RI, S/D, and FHB with advancing gestational age were also observed. CONCLUSIONS: Further investigation of DV hemodynamics throughout pregnancy may enable a greater understanding of normal placental perfusion, the fetal venous return to the heart and associated cardiac function.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)717-723
Number of pages7
JournalChang Gung Medical Journal
Issue number11
StatePublished - 11 2001
Externally publishedYes


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