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Do I need to take progesterone at 23 weeks of pregnancy?

Q: I am 21 years old and I had a baby born at 24 weeks gestation. The doctors didn't know why. He passed away soon after and I am pregnant once again. At 23 weeks they want to start me on progesterone shots and I don't want to do anything unnatural. I can't see anything in it that will hurt the baby but they have never done any long-term tests on babies to see if there were any side effects. Please help me give me information that will help me feel right about whether to go for it or not?

A:You seem to be having a tendency to go in for pre term labour. I am sure your doctor would have ruled out an incompetent cervical os (weak mouth of uterus, that results in early delivery of baby), congenital malformations in the uterus(that is some abnormality in shape of uterine cavity) and a fibroid uterus. In any case, at the moment, you need bed rest and some tocolytic drug (drug that relaxes the uterine muscle). I would advice ritodrine or terbutaline or isoxuprine or nifedipine. Progesterone is OK, but the other drugs are preferred. You must be under the care of an experienced obstetrician who is working in a tertiary hospital with a good neonatal intensive care unit and good & experienced neonatologists.

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