About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Drug That Halts Premature Labour may Be Risky for Babies

by Medindia Content Team on November 3, 2007 at 1:47 PM
Font : A-A+

Drug That Halts Premature Labour may Be Risky for Babies

A new study has revealed that a drug commonly used to halt premature labour may be associated with brain damage and intestinal issues in premature babies.

When a woman goes into labour early, obstetricians are faced with the possibility of delivering a baby who is not ready to breathe on its own. Often the mother is given both a tocolytic agent, or drug used to stop labour, and a steroid to help the baby's lungs mature faster. After the baby has had a couple days to allow the steroid to work, the tocolytic agent is stopped and the mother can give birth shortly after.

Advertisement

"As pediatricians and neonatalogists, it's important for us to know whether the benefit of these drugs outweighs the potential for complications for these medically fragile children," said Sanjiv Amin, M.D., assistant professor of Pediatrics at the University of Rochester Medical Center and author of an article on the subject.

"In the case of the tocolytic agent indomethacin, we know it impacts blood flow but there have been no large randomized studies to evaluate the effects on the baby," Amin added.
Advertisement

The new analysis of a collection of studies, or a metaanalysis, by University of Rochester Medical Center researchers pulls together enough data to conclude that there is a link between use of indomethacin and babies experiencing periventricular leukomalacia (white matter injury by decreasing blood flow in the brain, which may lead to cerebral palsy).

The analysis also showed a link between indomethacin and necrotizing entercolitis (a condition in which intestinal tissue dies, which can sometimes be successfully treated with antibiotics but can require surgery and even cause death), especially for those babies who were exposed to the drug within days of birth.

However, use of antenatal indomethacin is not linked to intraventricular hemorrhage (bleeding in the brain), patent ductus arteriosus (a congenital heart defect), respiratory distress syndrome (a life-threatening lung disorder) or death.

Obstetricians often employ indomethacin only when women go into labour extremely early. But many obstetricians believe it is more effective and has fewer side effects for the mother than other commonly used tocolytic agents, and so they may use it for woman whose babies are farther along.

Christopher Glantz, M.D., M.P.H., professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Rochester Medical Center and a co-author of the study, said he hopes the analysis will encourage obstetricians to use the drug only when women are in labour very early when their babies are at most risk of the problems related to pre-maturity.

"It's important for us to realize that these drugs are not benign," Glantz said. "None of the drugs we have to stop labour work all that well, and we're stuck between a rock - a premature baby who could benefit from more time in the womb - and a hard place - a baby who may develop problems because of drugs such as indomethacin that may provide extra time in the womb.

"We need to use the drug only on those who need it most," Glantz added. The study is published in American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

Source: ANI
LIN/M
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Advertisement
News Category
What's New on Medindia
International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2021 - Fighting for Rights in the Post-COVID Era
Effect of Blood Group Type on COVID-19 Risk and Severity
Woman with Rare Spinal Cord Defect from Birth Sues Doctor
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Drug Toxicity Signature Drug Toxicity Pregnancy Exercises and Massages Remedies to Treat Diabetes Naturally 

Recommended Reading
Learn About Pregnancy - Animation
Pregnancy Labor is caused by series of progressive expulsive contractions by the uterus and results ...
High Risk Pregnancy Group Calculator
Medindia offers you a useful calculator to find out if you fall under the high risk pregnant group. ...
Multiple Injections of Corticosteroids may Increase Cerebral Palsy in Pregnant Women
Pregnant women injected with a single injection of corticosteroids have reduced the baby's chances ....
Drug Toxicity
Drug toxicity is an adverse reaction of the body towards a drug that results as a side effect of a d...
Pregnancy Exercises and Massages
Nutritious food, rest, exercise and massage are vital for expectant women....
Remedies to Treat Diabetes Naturally
An article about the natural remedies available at home to treat diabetes effectively and ......

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use