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Revisiting the use of antenatal corticosteroids for late preterm and early term infants: An observational analytical study

 Department of Neonatology, Kerala Institute of Medical Sciences, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India

Correspondence Address:
Femitha Pournami,
Department of Neonatology, Kerala Institute of Medical Sciences, Thiruvananthapuram - 695 029, Kerala
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jcrsm.jcrsm_75_22

Background: Guidelines from prominent policymakers on the use of antenatal steroids (ANS) in “late preterm deliveries and early term casearian deliveries” (LET) are nonuniform. This descriptive study compared LET infants born during two-time epochs: Retrospective: ANS exposed (ANSE) (when institute practice was to administer ANS to all LET mothers), and prospective – ANS unexposed (ANSU) (after the policy was revised in May 2021). Methodology: All antenatal mothers of anticipated late-preterm and early-term cesarean deliveries were being administered ANS before May 2021. Following the revision of hospital policy, this practice was discontinued. Comparative analysis for respiratory morbidity (RM) and other clinically relevant outcomes were conducted in infants born during two-time epochs (ANSE vs. ANSU) Results: Among 379 included infants, those with RMs were comparable between groups: 33 (17.5%) in ANSE; 31 (16.4%) in ANSU – Odds ratio (OR) 1.08; 95% confidence interval (CI) (0.61–1.92), P = 0.78. No difference was noted in hypoglycemia events: 23 (12.2%) in ANSE; 22 (11.6%) in ANSU, OR = 1.05 95% CI (0.56–1.96), P = 0.87. Conclusion: ANS in LET did not seem to reduce the risk of RM. It may be appropriate to audit individual unit practices and relevant outcomes before blanket recommendations are made.

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