Large for gestational age (LGA)

Definition

Large for gestational age means that a fetus or infant is larger or more developed than normal for the baby's gestational age. Gestational age is the age of a fetus or baby that starts on the first day of the mother's last menstrual period.

Information

Large for gestational age (LGA) refers to a fetus or infant who is larger than expected for their age and gender. It can also include infants with a birth weight above the 90th percentile.

The LGA measurement is based on the estimated gestational age of the fetus or infant. Their actual measurements are compared with normal height, weight, head size, and development of a fetus or infant of the same age and gender.

Common causes of the condition are:

  • Gestational diabetes
  • Obese pregnant mother
  • Excessive weight gain during pregnancy

A baby that is LGA has a higher risk of birth injury. There is also a risk of complications of low blood sugar after delivery if the mother has diabetes.

References

Carlo WA. The high-risk infant. In: Kliegman RM, Stanton BF, St. Geme JW, Schor NF, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 20th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 97.

Cooke DW, Divall SA, Radovick S. Normal and aberrant growth in children. In: Melmed S, Polonsky KS, Larsen PR, Kronenberg HM, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 24.

Review Date: 
8/26/2017
Reviewed By: 
Peter J Chen, MD, FACOG, Associate Professor of OBGYN at Cooper Medical School at Rowan University, Camden, NJ. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

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