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How far off can doctors be from your due date?

my due date was march 30th and i had my son on the 8th, but when i went back to see when i got pregnant neither date matched up. i was just wanting to see how many people actually went to their due dates.

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 4:05 PM on Nov. 17, 2009 in Pregnancy

Answers (7)
  • They can be off two weeks in either direction.

    My son was born four days early, according to the doc's wheel...but right as expected according to my chart.

    Answer by gdiamante at 4:06 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • With dd#2 they were off a whole month, lol

    Answer by Gealach at 4:09 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • well it depends. if they are using an ultrasound in the first few weeks, they are likely to be pretty close. if they are using an ultrasound later in pregnancy, or just from other measurements, they can be way off. also it's very normal to have your baby at 38 weeks to 42 weeks. 37 weeks is also pretty normal, and it sounds like you went just before 37 weeks. most likely your due date was off a bit, or maybe your baby was just ready earlier than average. :)

    it kind of sounds like you are thinking of due dates as the date that your baby is really expected to be born, and that's rarely the case :)

    Answer by Anonymous at 4:10 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • Well, they used an U/S to determine how far along i actually was because i wasnt sure when my last cycle had been. I then had another U/S done at 20 weeks and then 24 weeks. They told me my due date was the 14th of July. I had my son july8th due to abruption and come to find out my baby was cooking and came out they told me he was actually late! So, you never know really unless you know for sure the day you concieved or you know the first day of your last cycle.

    Answer by Proudparent707 at 4:16 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • A due date is a midpoint of a range. It's a guess based upon having a 28 day cycle with ovulatin on day 14. The vast majorityof women do not have textbook menstrual cycles. This is why using LMP can be off by two weeks or more. In addition not every woman and baby gestates at the exact same pace...biology isn't like technology on an assembly line so there will always be variation. Some women gestate longer than others (first time mothers in particular), and some babies grow a little faster than others.

    For all these reasons only 5% of women give birth on the estimated due date by sheer luck. It is better to consider a due MONTH rather than a date because of all this variation of normal. But for some reason routine medical care insists on squashing every woman into the same pre-fab chart when they know its not accurate.

    Answer by amileegirl at 4:38 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • With my last baby, I birthed her 4 weeks after the start of my estimated due period. (which was "41 weeks")

    Even when a mom knows exactly when she conceived it doesn't guarantee that baby will be ready at exactly Day 280. Babies are unique, of course (whether they are still inside or already born). They mature at different rates.

    Answer by doulala at 4:56 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • lol. I am a firm believer that doc's don't know what they are talking about! My doc gave me 3 different due dates. Dec. 29, Dec. 20 and Dec. 14th. When I had my son the nurses kept talking about how big he was and said that he was at least a 42 week baby and I had him 3 days after my "Corect due date".  The ultrasound lady also told me that I would probob;y have a 7-8 pound baby and Damien weighed in at 10 pounds when he was born. lol.


    Answer by colorsofgrey at 1:18 PM on Nov. 18, 2009

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