When Do They Stop Giving Steroids To Develop Baby’s Lungs?

Steroids For Developing Baby'S LungsSource: bing.com

When a pregnant woman’s due date is approaching, it is important to ensure that the baby’s lungs are fully developed before delivery. In some cases, doctors may recommend administering steroids to accelerate the development of the baby’s lungs. However, it is essential to know when to stop giving steroids to avoid any potential harm to the baby. In this article, we will discuss when doctors typically stop giving steroids to develop baby’s lungs.

Why Are Steroids Given to Develop Baby’s Lungs?

Steroids are given to pregnant women who are at risk of delivering their baby prematurely. Premature babies often have underdeveloped lungs, which can lead to breathing difficulties and other complications. Steroids work by stimulating the production of surfactant, a substance that helps to keep the air sacs in the lungs open and prevent them from collapsing. This ensures that the baby’s lungs are mature enough to function properly after birth.

When Are Steroids Given?

Steroids are usually given to pregnant women between 24 and 34 weeks of gestation who are at risk of delivering their baby prematurely. The earlier the steroids are given, the more time the baby’s lungs have to develop. However, steroids should not be given too early, as they may not be effective in accelerating lung development. If a woman is at risk of premature delivery, her doctor may monitor her closely and decide when to administer steroids based on the gestational age of the baby and other factors.

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When Do They Stop Giving Steroids?

The duration of steroid treatment varies depending on the individual case. In most cases, a course of steroids consists of two injections given 24 hours apart. It is recommended to administer steroids at least 48 hours before delivery. However, in some cases, doctors may continue to give steroids up to 34 weeks of gestation if the woman is still at risk of delivering prematurely. It is important to note that giving steroids after 34 weeks does not provide any additional benefit and may even be harmful to the baby.

Are There Any Risks of Giving Steroids?

While steroids are generally safe for both the mother and the baby, there are some potential risks associated with their use. These include:

  • Increased risk of infection
  • Temporary increase in blood sugar levels in the mother
  • Temporary decrease in fetal movement
  • Temporary decrease in fetal heart rate

However, these risks are generally considered low, and the benefits of steroids in accelerating lung development far outweigh the risks.

Conclusion

Steroids are an effective way to accelerate the development of a baby’s lungs and reduce the risk of breathing difficulties and other complications after birth. They are usually given to pregnant women between 24 and 34 weeks of gestation who are at risk of delivering prematurely. It is essential to know when to stop giving steroids to avoid any potential harm to the baby. If you have any concerns about the use of steroids during pregnancy, speak to your doctor for more information.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Are steroids given to all pregnant women?

A: No, steroids are only given to pregnant women who are at risk of delivering their baby prematurely.

Q: Are there any side effects of steroids on the baby?

A: While the risks of giving steroids are generally considered low, there are some potential side effects, including temporary decrease in fetal movement and heart rate.

Q: When is the best time to give steroids?

A: Steroids should be given between 24 and 34 weeks of gestation, at least 48 hours before delivery.

Q: Can steroids be harmful to the baby?

A: Giving steroids after 34 weeks of gestation does not provide any additional benefit and may even be harmful to the baby.

Q: What is the purpose of giving steroids?

A: Steroids are given to accelerate the development of a baby’s lungs and reduce the risk of breathing difficulties and other complications after birth.

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I am a child development specialist with a strong passion for helping parents navigate the exciting and sometimes challenging journey of raising a child. Through my website, I aim to provide parents with practical advice and reliable information on topics such as infant sleep, feeding, cognitive and physical development, and much more. As a mother of two young children myself, I understand the joys and struggles of parenting and am committed to supporting other parents on their journey.

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