How Long After Steroid Injection Is Baby Born (And Why)?

Exact Answer: Up to 7 days

Giving birth to a baby is a really long and hard process. A baby stays and develops inside the mother’s womb. Ideally, a baby stays inside the mother’s womb for at least 37 weeks but in some cases, the baby tries to come out before 37 weeks. This situation is called preterm delivery.

In preterm delivery, the body of the baby is not properly developed which can cause problems after the birth of the baby. So, to prevent preterm delivery, some medications and steroids are given to the mother. In such a situation, one may wonder how long after steroid injection a baby is born.

How Long After Steroid Injection Is Baby Born?

In normal cases, a baby is supposed to come out of the mother’s womb after 37 weeks. During this time, the baby’s body develops and goes through several changes inside the mother’s womb. But there are many cases when the baby tries to come out before this period. This leads to preterm labor. Babies born before 37 weeks may have several health problems after birth.

In such cases, the doctor tries to give medication and steroid injections to the baby through the mother. With the help of these steroid injections, the growth of the lungs in the baby’s body is facilitated. In most preterm delivery cases, the newborn baby gets lungs problems, which is why steroids are given to make the baby’s lungs grow quickly. Steroids try to prevent post-birth problems as much as they can.

In most cases, steroids are given before 7 days of expected labor. However, in some cases, it can be given in 2 to 3 days before expected delivery depending on the circumstances. There are Some drugs also help in delaying preterm birth. This delay can vary from 2 days up to a week. During this delay, steroids also make the growth in a baby faster so that problems after birth can be prevented. Sometimes, multiple doses of steroids are given to the mother to keep the baby and the mother safe. This is done after analyzing the health of the mother as well as the baby.

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ScaleTime
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Why Baby Takes That Long To Be Born After Steroid Injections?

As said before, if a baby is born before 37 weeks staying inside the mother’s womb, they might face several health issues. A baby born before 35 weeks, may have lungs and brain problems. Ideally, a baby should stay in the mother’s womb for 37 weeks. Babies born before that are not fully developed physically. Hence, babies born before the ideal time may have underdeveloped lungs and brains. This can cause breathing problems and brain damage in newborn babies.

That is why, to make the growth of lungs and brain, steroids are given to the baby through the mother. The steroids are given to the mother which passes on to the baby inside the mother’s womb. But, steroid injections cannot be given anytime. An expected labor time is analyzed by doctors and according to that steroid injections are given. If there is no risk of preterm labor, then steroid injections can also be avoided. It is said that steroid injections also have side effects which have a major impact on the mother’s as well as baby’s health in the future. That is why steroids are given 7 days before the birth of the baby.

If the expected labor is analyzed later, then steroid injections can be given within 2 days. However, in any case, one should not take multiple steroid injections as unnecessary steroid injections have major side effects. Hence, one should always consult a doctor regarding the problem and avoid too many unnecessary steroid injections.

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Conclusion

A baby is supposed to stay and grow inside the mother’s womb for 37 weeks ideally. However, if a baby is about to be born before that period, then it means that there is a possibility that the baby’s lungs are not fully grown. To prevent any major problems in the future, doctors give steroid injections to the mother so that baby’s lungs growth can be facilitated. Generally, steroid injections are given 7 days before expected delivery but they can be given 2 days before delivery as well.

However, too many steroid injections can also have major side effects so one should always consult a doctor about whether they should take steroid injections or not.

References

  1. https://www.cochranelibrary.com/cdsr/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD000065/abstract
  2. https://academic.oup.com/ije/article-abstract/39/suppl_1/i122/702274
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