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Evid Based Nurs 5:10 doi:10.1136/ebn.5.1.10
  • Treatment

Review: moderately early postnatal corticosteroids reduce chronic lung disease and mortality in preterm infants, but increase complications

Moderately early postnatal corticosteroids (PCs) (7–14 d after birth) v control for preterm infants with or at risk of chronic lung disease*

Weighted event rates
Outcomes Number of studies (n) Early PCs Control RRR (95% CI) NNT (CI)
Chronic lung disease (CLD) at 28 days 6 (623) 76% 87% 13% (6 to 19) 10 (6 to 17)
CLD at 36 weeks postmenstrual age 5 (247) 34% 55% 38% (18 to 53) 5 (3 to 12)
Death or CLD at 28 days 4 (520) 82% 96% 14% (9 to 19) 8 (6 to 13)
Death or CLD at 36 weeks postmenstrual age 5 (247) 45% 72% 37% (22 to 49) 4 (3 to 7)
Need for late steroids 5 (545) 12% 24% 50% (29 to 65) 9 (6 to 17)
RRI (95% CI) NNH (CI)
*Abbreviations defined in glossary; RRR, RRI, NNT, NNH and CI calculated from data in article using a fixed effects model.
Hyperglycaemia 7 (659) 35% 23% 51% (20 to 90) 9 (6 to 20)
Hypertension 6 (599) 8% 3% 173% (25 to 495) 20 (13 to 100)
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy 3 (168) 27% 8% 229% (50 to 620) 6 (4 to 12)
Gastrointestinal bleeding 3 (485) 14% 8% 74% (2 to 198) 17 (undefined to 10)
Infection 7 (659) 33% 24% 35% (6 to 71) 12 (7 to 50)

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