Pregnancy: Is one-sided fetal movement normal?

I'm 29 weeks pregnant. Is it strange to only feel movement on the right side of my uterus? I never feel anything on my left side.

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Peg Plumbo CNM

Peg Plumbo has been a certified nurse-midwife (CNM) since 1976. She has assisted at over 1,000 births and currently teaches in the... Read more

Although we picture babies as tossing and turning like gymnasts, they actually have a preference for one or two positions. Many babies begin life head down and favoring one side or the other and maintain this for the duration of the gestation.

At 28 to 30 weeks, we see babies settling onto their favorite side probably due to the increasing restriction of the uterus. They certainly may still turn somersaults but this is not as common as it is earlier in gestation.

When the fetal back is on the maternal left side, the feet and hands are generally directed toward the maternal right and she will feel most of the movement on the right. This is perfectly normal.

There are rare deformities of the uterus, which restrict the pregnancy to one side or the other, but it is unlikely you would have gotten this far with such a deformity. An exceptionally short cord may also restrict fetal movement, but again this is rare.

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