Skip to content
Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter June 2, 2015

Does ethnicity have an effect on fetal behavior? A comparison of Asian and Caucasian populations

Uiko Hanaoka, Toshiyuki Hata, Kenji Kanenishi, Mohamed Ahmed Mostafa AboEllail, Rina Uematsu, Yukihiko Konishi, Takashi Kusaka, Junko Noguchi, Genzo Marumo, Oliver Vasilj and Asim Kurjak

Abstract

Aim: This study aimed to evaluate the ethnic difference in fetal behavior between Asian and Caucasian populations.

Methods: Fetal behavior was assesed by Kurjak’s antenatal neurodevelopmental test (KANET) using four-dimensional (4D) ultrasound between 28 and 38 weeks of gestation. Eighty-nine Japanese (representative of Asians) and seventy-eight Croatian (representative of Caucasians) pregnant women were studied. The total value of KANET score and values of each parameter (eight parameters) were compared.

Results: The total KANET score was normal in both populations, but there was a significant difference in total KANET scores between Japanese (median, 14; range, 10–16) and Croatian fetuses (median, 12; range, 10–15) (P<0.0001). When individual KANET parameters were compared, we found significant differences in four fetal movements (isolated head anteflexion, isolated eye blinking, facial alteration or mouth opening, and isolated leg movement). No significant differences were noted in the four other parameters (cranial suture and head circumference, isolated hand movement or hand to face movements, fingers movements, and gestalt of general movements).

Conclusion: Our results suggest that ethnicity should be considered when evaluating fetal behavior, especially during assessment of fetal facial expressions. Although there was a difference in the total KANET score between Japanese and Croatian populations, all the scores in both groups were within normal range. Our results indicate that ethnical differences in fetal behaviour do not affect the total KANET score, but close follow-up should be continued in some borderline cases.


Corresponding author: Toshiyuki Hata, MD, PhD, Department of Perinatology and Gynecology, Kagawa University Graduate School of Medicine, 1750-1 Ikenobe, Miki, Kagawa 761-0793, Japan, Tel.: +81-(0)87-891-2174, Fax: +81-(0)87-891-2175, E-mail:

Acknowledgments

The work reported in this paper was supported by a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research on Innovative Areas “Constructive Developmental Science” (No. 24119004), and Research Grant (No. 25462561) from The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Japan.

References

[1] Kurjak A, Miskovic B, Stanojević M, Amiel-Tison C, Ahmed B, Azumendi G, et al. New scoring system for fetal neurobehavior assessed by three- and four-dimensional sonography. J Perinat Med. 2008;36:73–81.10.1515/JPM.2008.007Search in Google Scholar PubMed

[2] Stanojević M, Talic A, Miskovic B, Vasilj O, Shaddad AN, Ahmed B, et al. An attempt to standardize Kurjak’s Antenatal Neurodevelopmental Test: Osaka consensus statement. Donald School J Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. 2011;5:317–29.10.5005/jp-journals-10009-1209Search in Google Scholar

[3] Antsaklis P, Kurjak A, Izebegovic S. Functional test for fetal brain: the role of KANET test. Donald School J Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. 2013;7:385–99.10.5005/jp-journals-10009-1309Search in Google Scholar

[4] Yan F, Dai SY, Akther N, Kuno A, Yanagihara T, Hata T. Four-dimensional sonographic assessment of fetal facial expression early in the third trimester. Int J Gynecol Obstet. 2006;94:108–13.10.1016/j.ijgo.2006.05.004Search in Google Scholar PubMed

[5] Kurjak A, Andonotopo W, Hafner T, Salihagić-Kadić A, Stanojević M, Azumendi G, et al. Normal standards for fetal neurobehavioral developments – longitudinal quantification by four-dimensional sonography. J Perinat Med. 2006;34:56–65.10.1515/JPM.2006.007Search in Google Scholar PubMed

[6] Yigiter AB, Kavak ZN. Normal standards of fetal behavior assessed by four-dimensional sonography. J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med. 2006;19:707–21.10.1080/14767050600924129Search in Google Scholar PubMed

[7] Kanenishi K, Hanaoka U, Noguchi J, Marumo G, Hata T. 4D ultrasound evaluation of fetal facial expressions during the latter stages of the second trimester. Int J Gynecol Obstet. 2013;121:257–60.10.1016/j.ijgo.2013.01.018Search in Google Scholar PubMed

[8] Sato M, Kanenishi K, Hanaoka U, Noguchi J, Marumo G, Hata T. 4D ultrasound study of fetal facial expressions at 20–24 weeks of gestateon. Int J Gynecol Obstet. 2014;126:275–9.10.1016/j.ijgo.2014.03.036Search in Google Scholar PubMed

[9] Farkas LG, Katic MJ, Forrest CR. International anthropometric study of facial morphology in various ethnic groups/races. J Craniofac Surg. 2005;16:615–46.10.1097/01.scs.0000171847.58031.9eSearch in Google Scholar PubMed

[10] Le TT, Farkas LG, Ngim RCK, Levin LS, Forrest CR. Proportionality in Asian and North American Caucasian faces using neoclassical facial canons as criteria. Aesth Plast Surg. 2002;26:64–9.10.1007/s00266-001-0033-7Search in Google Scholar PubMed

[11] Robles de Medina PG, Visser GH, Huizink AC, Buitelaar JK, Mulder EJ. Fetal behaviour does not differ between boys and girls. Early Hum Dev. 2003;73:17–26.10.1016/S0378-3782(03)00047-1Search in Google Scholar

[12] Kunjur J, Sabesan T, Ilankovan V. Anthropometric analysis of eyebrows and eyelids: an inter-racial study. Br J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 2006;44:89–93.10.1016/j.bjoms.2005.03.020Search in Google Scholar PubMed

[13] Zhuang Z, Landsittel D, Benson S, Roberge R, Shaffer R. Facial anthropometric differences among gender, ethnicity, and age groups. Am Occup Hyg. 2010;54:391–402.Search in Google Scholar

[14] Kurjak A, Stanojevic M, Predojevic M, Lausin I, Salihagic-Kadic A. Neurobehavior in fetal life. Semin Fetal Neonat M. 2012;17:319–23.10.1016/j.siny.2012.06.005Search in Google Scholar PubMed

The authors stated that there are no conflicts of interest regarding the publication of this article.

Received: 2015-1-23
Accepted: 2015-5-6
Published Online: 2015-6-2
Published in Print: 2016-3-1

©2016 by De Gruyter