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Drugs which can Prevent Premature Births are no more Effective

A baby is born on the 40th week of pregnancy normally. If the baby is born before the 37th week, then such a baby is called a premature one. Infants, who are born prematurely, are at high risks of dying. If ever they survive, these babies are prone to several health problems in the later years of their lives. All over the world, premature birth is the sole reason for the deaths of infants. Premature delivery of babies or Preterm labor is faced by many pregnant women in the United States too. According to an estimate, nearly 12 percent of births or 1 in every 8 births are preterm in this country.

Exact causes of premature delivery are not known yet. Latest research studies (dated December 2009), carried out in this topic report that the drugs meant to address this health complication of premature birth, are ineffective. This article tries to gain further insight.

Knowledge Gained from the Research Study:

  • Infection is believed to be the main cause for women who undergo the condition called preterm labor.
  • One reason for this belief is that if the infection is not timely prevented, it leads to miscarriage of the baby.
  • An antibiotic called Azithromycin is given by the doctors to prevent the infection until now.
  • According to a research study conducted by Liverpool scientists in England, it is learnt that the antibiotic is effective in reducing the risks of infection, but cannot stop preterm labor.
  • The research study involved 2000 pregnant women as participants. They were divided in to two groups of 1000 participants each. One group was given the antibiotic and the other group was untreated.
  • The study showed that treatment of infections with Azithromycin, do not reduce the risk of premature delivery.
  • It also suggested that further studies on this subject should focus on other factors of preterm labor leaving infections.
  • This research finding is a bad news for pregnant women especially from developing countries. They are at higher risks of infections because of the prevalence of malaria and HIV in these parts of the world.

The research study discourages given of this drug on routine basis to pregnant women for preventing preterm labor any more. Women who had preterm births earlier, who are pregnant with twins or triplets and who have uterine complications should be extra careful as they are at higher risks of preterm labor than any other group.

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