New birthweight and head circumference centiles for gestational ages 24 to 42 weeks

Early Hum Dev. 1987 Jan;15(1):45-52. doi: 10.1016/0378-3782(87)90099-5.


Based on 20,713 singleton livebirths at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, in 1978-1984, we calculated new birthweight and head circumference values for males and females between 24 and 42 weeks of gestation. Among the 803 babies born at or before 34 weeks of gestation, 28% were delivered electively for fetal problems; they were considerably lighter and had smaller heads than infants born after spontaneous preterm labour. As we and others have recommended elsewhere, the electively delivered preterm infants were excluded from the calculation of the new birthweight and head circumference centiles. In our series males were heavier and had larger head circumferences than females at most gestational ages. There were consistent and statistically significant differences in birthweight at all gestational ages from 37 weeks and in head circumference at all gestational ages from 35 weeks.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Birth Weight*
  • Cephalometry*
  • Female
  • Gestational Age*
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn*
  • Infant, Premature
  • Male
  • Reference Values
  • Sex Factors