Clinical application of fetal left modified myocardial performance index in the evaluation of fetal growth restriction

J Perinat Med. 2015 Nov;43(6):749-54. doi: 10.1515/jpm-2014-0018.


Objective: This study aims to evaluate cardiac function in fetuses with intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) compared with healthy fetuses, using the left modified myocardial performance index (MPI) and the association between MPI and perinatal outcome.

Methods: Pregnant women between 34 and 39 weeks of gestation, who met the criteria for IUGR and were scheduled for delivery at an Egyptian tertiary medical center, were prospectively enrolled in the study. Women in the same gestational-age group with uncomplicated pregnancies were included as a control group. MPI was measured in all fetuses. The IUGR group was analyzed based on normal and abnormal umbilical artery (UA) Doppler. Perinatal outcomes were recorded.

Results: The mean left MPI was significantly higher in IUGR fetuses with abnormal UA Doppler (mean 0.58±SD 0.093) compared with healthy fetuses (mean 0.45±SD 0.070) (P<0.001). IUGR fetuses with abnormal left MPI showed significantly worse perinatal outcome and increased morbidity compared with the control group. IUGR fetuses with abnormal left MPI also showed significantly worse perinatal outcome compared with IUGR fetuses with normal MPI (whether the UA Doppler was normal or abnormal). The fetal MPI was associated with the severity of fetal compromise in IUGR fetuses based on the perinatal outcome.

Conclusion: MPI is a potentially useful tool in evaluating fetuses with suspected IUGR, which is crucial in classifying IUGR pregnancies into critical and non-critical cases and in predicting neonatal outcome.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Female
  • Fetal Growth Retardation / diagnostic imaging*
  • Fetal Growth Retardation / physiopathology
  • Fetal Heart / diagnostic imaging*
  • Fetal Heart / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Pregnancy
  • Prospective Studies
  • Ultrasonography, Doppler
  • Ultrasonography, Prenatal*