Antepartum corticosteroids: disease stabilization in patients with the syndrome of hemolysis, elevated liver enzymes, and low platelets (HELLP)

American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology
E F MagannJ N Martin

Abstract

Our purpose was to evaluate the impact of antepartum administration of corticosteroids on the course of the syndrome of hemolysis, elevated liver enzymes, and low platelets (HELLP) in pregnancies at 24 to 37 weeks' gestation. This prospective, randomized study was undertaken in 25 antepartum patients with atypical severe preeclampsia expressed as HELLP syndrome. Twelve pregnant women were randomized to receive double-dose dexamethasone (10 mg intravenously every 12 hours) until delivery, and 13 women were randomized to the control arm. Management and delivery decisions for all patients were based on a common protocol, with delivery undertaken for a deteriorating maternal or fetal condition. In the corticosteroid-treated group the maternal platelet count significantly increased (p = 0.006), whereas lactic dehydrogenase and alanine aminotransferase significantly decreased over time (p = 0.03 and p = 0.005) in comparison to the 13 women who did not receive corticosteroids. Maternal urinary output after entry into the study was significantly increased within hours after steroid administration versus the control group (p = 0.0006). The study entry-to-delivery interval (41 +/- 15 hours) was significantly longer in the group of steroi...Continue Reading

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