Objective. To assess the value of early transabdominal uterine artery Doppler ultrasound for the prediction of gestational outcomes in pregnancies at high risk for preeclampsia. Methods. This was an observational study. Doppler ultrasound of the uterine arteries at 11-14 weeks of gestation was performed in 76 women at high risk for preeclampsia. Abnormal uterine Doppler was defined by the presence of bilateral notching or by a mean resistance index (RI) >0.80. Adverse outcomes evaluated were preeclampsia, fetal growth restriction, placental abruption, intrauterine death, and complications requiring delivery before 34 weeks of gestation. Results. Among 76 women, 30 (39%) had abnormal uterine Doppler and 46 (61%) had normal Doppler waveform configuration and RI. Abnormal uterine flow was related to a significantly higher incidence of preeclampsia (17% vs. 0%; p = 0.0041), fetal growth restriction (27% vs. 0%; p = 0.0002), intrauterine death (13% vs. 0%; p = 0.0109), and iatrogenic preterm delivery (20% vs. 2%; p = 0.0086). When the Doppler was normal, the negative predictive value for complications requiring delivery before 34 weeks was 98%. Conclusions. Normal impedance to flow in uterine arteries between 11 and 14 weeks of gestation is strongly related to a normal pregnancy outcome in women at high risk for preeclampsia. © 2008 Informa UK Ltd.
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