Premature Birth: Risks Involved

13 June 17

Any baby born before the 37th week of gestation are considered premature. Unfortunately, premature birth comes with its own set of risks and complications, which every mother needs to be aware of beforehand. Read on to understand them in detail:

#1: Immature lungs

Babies develop at different rates, and most babies have mature lungs by 36 weeks. However, if it’s not the case, the baby can experience Respiratory Distress Syndrome (RDS), Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia (BPD) or Transient tachypnea.

Irregular breathing can lead to lung deterioration, which is why, doctors recommend an injection of steroids to speed up the development of the lungs.

#2: Apnea

A phenomenon leading to absence of breathing, Apnea can be cured in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. If a newborn develops an irregular breathing pattern of pauses longer than 10-15 seconds, get it checked at the NICU as soon as possible.

#3: Immature digestive system

Premature babies are too immature to absorb nutrients effectively, which can lead to problems in digestion. Therefore, intravenous feeding or IV feeding is highly recommended to ensure that your baby feeds properly. Post a few days of birth, the baby can be fed through a tube with breast milk if it doesn’t have the ability to swallow on its own.

#4: Pneumonia

Premature birth can often lead to complications with respiratory problems, thereby, leading to pneumonia. The condition can cause inflammation, which leads little space for exchange of air. Be sure to have the doctor provide supplemental oxygen, along with antibiotics to treat the condition, for if left untreated, it can cause severe infection. 

#5: Intra ventricular hemorrhage (IVH)

Babies born at 24-26 weeks of gestation have the highest risk of IVH, which increases risk of bleeding in the brain. The immature blood vessels are less likely to keep up with the changes in circulation during labor, which can lead to other complications like cerebral palsy and autism.

#6: Infections

Due to improper development, a premature baby finds it hard to resist certain infections like meningitis and sepsis. In such cases, the newborn is placed in an incubator to provide protection against these conditions.

Among Pune’s pediatric hospitals that pioneer in mother and child care, Oyster & Pearl stands out with its exemplary standards of services backed by a legacy of six decades. The hospital is fully equipped with a state-of-the-art NICU to ensure that proper care and attention are given to you as well as your little one at every step of your motherhood.