Effect of L-arginine on amniotic fluid index in oligohydramnios

Rinoy Sreedharan, Shubhada Jajoo


Background: Oligohydramnios is a common diagnosis in obstetrics and carries an increased risk of operative interference and perinatal mortality and morbidity. Identification and proper management of oligohydramnios can result in a favourable outcome. The administration of L-arginine (nitric oxide donor) has been suggested to improve the amniotic fluid index (AFI) in oligohydramnios.

Methods: This is a prospective study conducted over a period of two years. A total of 100 women attending antenatal clinic of Acharya Vinoba Bhave Rural Hospital, Sawangi (Meghe), Wardha who were diagnosed with oligohydramnios were included. Women who fulfilled the inclusion criteria were prescribed sachets of L-arginine containing 3g of the active ingredient for periods varying between 1 to 4 weeks. Change in AFI was noted.

Results: L-arginine increases the amniotic fluid index in cases of oligohydramnios by 2.03±0.39 cm.

Conclusions: L-arginine could be a potent treatment option for treatment of oligohydramnios. However extensive long-term studies are required to demonstrate not only its efficacy but also effect on maternal and perinatal outcome.


Oligohydramnios, L-arginine, Amniotic fluid index

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