Preterm babies get the best care at Niloufer Hospital

By Staff Reporter
A view of the Niloufer Hospital in Hyderabad. (Source: File photo)

Around 30 infants who were born preterm (before 37 weeks of pregnancy) and recovered at Niloufer Hospital were brought to the health facility by their mothers to celebrate the New Born Baby Week (November 15-21) held on Thursday.

Specialist doctors from the Neonatology department of the government hospital said they handle hundreds of newborns including preterm babies every month. Head of the department Dr M Alimelu said that taking care of preterm babies is costly. “Several people who have spent lakhs of rupees for treatment at private hospitals have admitted their babies at our hospital and they have recovered,” said Dr Alimelu.

An associate professor at the department, Dr L Swapna said that after discharging the preterm babies, they follow up the patients for up to one-and-half years. This is done to track maturity of eyes, brain and other factors. Doctors from the Paediatrics department, Obstetrics and Gynaecology department too were present at the celebrations.

A similar programme was held by KIMS Cuddles in Hyderabad on Wednesday where around 300 children along with their families gathered to increase the confidence that preterm babies who receive optimised care can reach normal developmental outcomes in childhood was also conducted.

Risk factors

Dr Aparna C, Clinical Director, Neonatology said that the risk factors for preterm birth are adolescent pregnancy, short time gaps between births, unhealthy pre-pregnancy weight (underweight or obesity), chronic disease (e.g., diabetes), infectious diseases (e.g., HIV), substance abuse (e.g., tobacco use and heavy alcohol use), heavy physical labour during pregnancy and poor psychological health.

“Prevention of preterm birth is certainly better than cure. A few cost-effective interventions to prevent preterm births are family planning, especially for girls in regions with high rates of adolescent pregnancy; promoting better nutrition, prevention and screening or management of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), e.g., HIV and syphilis; environmental and occupational health and education for women,” she said.

She added that in the recent times the role of hormones such as progesterone in high risk mothers and low dose aspirin have been shown to be useful to prevent prematurity.


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