Antenatal Corticosteroids for Fetal Lung Development
How Well It Works
There is strong evidence that a single course of corticosteroid medicine given to the mother during premature labor improves the outcome for the infant born between 24 and 34 weeks' gestation.Reference 1
Betamethasone or dexamethasone is most effective if delivery occurs at least 24 hours after the first dose of the medicine has been given and less than 7 days after the last dose of the medicine.
Either medicine will benefit a premature newborn by lowering the risk of:
- Breathing problems (Reference respiratory distress syndrome Opens New Window) after birth.
- Bleeding in the brain (intraventricular hemorrhage).
- Intestinal infection (Reference necrotizing enterocolitis Opens New Window).
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: January 10, 2011|
|Medical Review:||Reference Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
Reference William Gilbert, MD - Maternal and Fetal Medicine