You can take steps to help ensure that your infant isn't born before his or her lungs have developed completely.
These steps include:
- Seeing your doctor regularly during your pregnancy
- Following a healthy diet
- Not smoking and avoiding tobacco smoke, alcohol, and illegal drugs
- Controlling any ongoing medical conditions you have
- Preventing infection
Your doctor may give you injections of a corticosteroid medicine if he or she thinks you may give birth too early. This medicine can speed up surfactant production and development of the lungs, brain, and kidneys in your fetus.
Usually, within about 24 hours of your taking this medicine, the fetus's lungs start making enough surfactant. This will reduce the infant's risk of respiratory distress syndrome (RDS), which can lead to bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD).
If your baby does develop RDS, it will probably be fairly mild. If the RDS isn't mild, BPD will likely develop.
Read more articles on Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia
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