The predictive value of amniotic fluid index for adverse perinatal outcome and suggested plan of action

Ritu Bawa, . Neerja


Background: Modern obstetrics and perinatal medicine is concerned with recognition of a fetus at risk for death or damage in utero: quantifying the risk and determining the optimal time and mode of intervention. Objective of present study was to determine whether an antepartum amniotic fluid index (AFI) of 5.0cm or less is a predictor of adverse perinatal outcome.

Methods: This was a prospective study of 400 antenatal women booked at Muzaffarnagar Medical College during the year 2015-16 with gestational age between 36 and 41 weeks AFI was determined using the Phelan’s technique within 7 days of delivery or at the onset of labour. Perinatal outcome was compared between two groups i.e. AFI ≤5 and >5.

Results: An AFI of 5.0cm or less was significantly associated with higher cesarean section rate for fetal distress and low birth weight babies. There was no significant difference in APGAR score at 5 min. <7 between the two groups.

Conclusions: Determination of AFI is valuable for predicting fetal distress in labour requiring cesarean section. It can be used as an adjacent to other fetal surveillance methods. An AFI <5 detected after 36 weeks of gestation is an indicator of poor perinatal outcome.


Amniotic fluid index, APGAR score, Cesarean delivery, Non-stress test

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