Role of uterine artery Doppler at 12 to 16 weeks of gestation in prediction of pre-eclampsia an observational study

Asha Neravi, Voorkara Udayashree


Background: Pre-eclampsia affects 2-5% of pregnancies and is a major cause of perinatal and maternal morbidity and mortality. Doppler is a non-invasive method for evaluation of feto-placental circulation without affecting pregnancy. A high resistance index in uterine artery Doppler waveform has been shown to be the best non-invasive screening test. Thus, we have conducted this study to find out the predictive value of transvaginal uterine artery doppler in early pregnancy for the prediction of pre-eclampsia. The aim of the study was early prediction of pre-eclampsia by trans-vaginal uterine artery Doppler study at 12-16 weeks.

Methods: According to the study criteria 100 antenatal women between 12 to 16 weeks of singleton pregnancy attending out patient in the Department of OBG of S. D. M. Medical College Dharwad were included. After an informed consent, the women underwent ultrasound for dating and subsequently trans-vaginal ultrasound along with color doppler was performed to obtain uterine artery indices. These women were again rescanned at 24-26 weeks of gestation trans-abdominally and further followed up clinically for development of preeclampsia.

Results: Out of 100 women, 22 patients developed preeclampsia. At 12-16 weeks 35% of women had bilateral uterine artery notching, mean RI was 0.57 and PI was 0.89. When uterine artery notch at 12-16 weeks alone was considered, 34.28% of women developed preeclampsia. Detection rate increased to 85.71% when RI>0.65 was also included along with notching. Uterine artery notching at 12-16 weeks gestation had 34.29% sensitivity, 84.62% specificity, 70.51% NPV. When notch and RI>0.65 considered together sensitivity and NPV increases to 85.71% to 98.25%.

Conclusions: The uterine artery Doppler waveform indices at 12-16 weeks are the best non-invasive screening test available for early prediction of preeclampsia.


Preeclampsia, Pulsatality index, Resistance index, Uterine artery Doppler, Uterine artery diastolic notch

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