Journal Article and Summary

Article: Fetal Movement Counting and Perinatal Mortality

Citation: Bellussi, Federica, et al. “Fetal Movement Counting and Perinatal Mortality.” Obstetrics & Gynecology, vol. 135, no. 2, Feb. 2020, pp. 453–462.,

  • Currently, there is no accepted qualitative or quantitative definition of decreased fetal movement. Some of the most commonly used are:

    Less than 10 movements within 2 hours
    No movement over 24 hours

  • Decreased fetal movement is associated with many complications including but not limited to stillbirth, growth restrictions, placental insufficiency, congenital anomalies, and neonatal mortality

  • This systematic review studied whether maternal fetal movement counting could prevent poor pregnancy outcomes.

  • 468,000 fetuses were included across 5 studies in which mothers were broken up into standard care or instruction for fetal movement counting.

  • They found no statistically significant difference in neonatal death, five-minute APGAR scores, or NICU admissions.

  • There was a small but significant increase in preterm birth and induction of labor in the intervention group.