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The Potter sequence is a constellation of findings demonstrated postnatally as a consequence of severe, prolonged oligohydramnios in utero.
It consists of:
- pulmonary hypoplasia: often severe and incompatible with life
- growth restriction (IUGR)
- abnormal facies (Potter facies)
- limb abnormalities: including club feet and contractures
These common clinical features can be easily recalled using the mnemonic POTTER.
Although originally associated with renal causes of olighydramnios, the Potter sequence may be seen with severe oligohydramnios of essentially any cause.
Common etiologies include:
- fetal renal insufficiency
- premature rupture of membranes (PROM)
- twin-twin transfusion
Treatment and prognosis
The prognosis is poor with a very high mortality rate, primarily secondary to pulmonary hypoplasia.
History and etymology
It is named after Edith Louise Potter (1901-1993), an American pathologist who described the syndrome specifically in association with bilateral renal agenesis 3.
- 1. Gomella TL, Cunningham MD, Eyal F. Neonatology, management, procedures, on-call problems, diseases and drugs. McGraw-Hill Professional. (2009) ISBN:0071544313. Read it at Google Books - Find it at Amazon
- 2. Christianson C, Huff D, Mcpherson E. Limb deformations in oligohydramnios sequence: effects of gestational age and duration of oligohydramnios. Am. J. Med. Genet. 1999;86 (5): 430-3. Am. J. Med. Genet. (link) - Pubmed citation
- 3. Potter E. Facial Characteristics of Infants with Bilateral Renal Agenesis. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1946;51(6):885-8. doi:10.1016/s0002-9378(16)39968-9