Progestogens for preterm birth prevention: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

Likis FE, Edwards DR, Andrews JC, Woodworth AL, Jerome RN, Fonnesbeck CJ, McKoy JN, Hartmann KE
Obstet Gynecol. 2012 120 (4): 897-907

PMID: 22955308 · DOI:10.1097/AOG.0b013e3182699a15

OBJECTIVE - We systematically reviewed the effectiveness of progestogens for prevention of preterm birth among women with prior spontaneous preterm birth, multiple gestations, preterm labor, short cervix, or other indications.

DATA SOURCES - We searched MEDLINE and EMBASE databases for English language articles published from January 1966 to October 2011.

METHODS OF STUDY SELECTION - We excluded publications that were not randomized controlled trials or had fewer than 20 participants, identifying 34 publications, of which 19 contained data for Bayesian meta-analysis.

TABULATION, INTEGRATION, AND RESULTS - Two reviewers independently extracted data and assigned overall quality ratings based on predetermined criteria. Among women with prior preterm birth and a singleton pregnancy (five randomized controlled trials), progestogen treatment decreased the median risk of preterm birth by 22% (relative risk [RR] 0.78, 95% Bayesian credible interval 0.68-0.88) and neonatal death by 42% (RR 0.58, 95% Bayesian credible interval 0.27-0.98). The evidence suggests progestogen treatment does not prevent prematurity (RR 1.02, 95% Bayesian credible interval 0.87-1.17) or neonatal death (RR 1.44, 95% Bayesian credible interval 0.46-3.18) in multiple gestations. Limited evidence suggests progestogen treatment may prevent prematurity in women with preterm labor (RR 0.62, 95% Bayesian credible interval 0.47-0.79) and short cervix (RR 0.52, 95% Bayesian credible interval 0.36-0.70). Across indications, evidence about maternal, fetal, or neonatal health outcomes, other than reducing preterm birth and neonatal mortality, is inconsistent, insufficient, or absent.

CONCLUSION - Progestogens prevent preterm birth when used in singleton pregnancies for women with a prior preterm birth. In contrast, evidence suggests lack of effectiveness for multiple gestations. Evidence supporting all other uses is insufficient to guide clinical care. Overall, clinicians and patients lack longer-term information to understand whether intervention has the ultimately desired outcome of preventing morbidity and promoting normal childhood development.

MeSH Terms (9)

Bayes Theorem Female Humans Pregnancy Premature Birth Progestins Recurrence Risk Factors Treatment Outcome

Connections (2)

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