Prevent Premature Birth with Progesterone Therapy
What is progesterone?
It is a hormone naturally made by your body during pregnancy.
It is a common treatment that lowers the risk of preterm birth better than any other.
How do I know if I’m at risk for premature birth?
Have you had a premature baby before? (born before the 37th week of pregnancy)
Were you told you have a short cervix? (the lower end of the womb)
Have you had surgery on your cervix?
Other risk factors for having a premature birth include:
Getting pregnant less than 18 months after giving birth, having a multiple pregnancy (twins, triplets, etc.), getting pregnant less than 6 months after a miscarriage, low pre-pregnancy weight, poor nutrition, smoking, illegal drug use, vaginal bleeding, uterine infection.
What can I do?
See a medical professional as soon as you know you’re pregnant.
Ask your doctor, nurse or midwife how progesterone therapy can lower the chance your baby will be born early.
How is it given?
There are two choices. Each method has the same chance of helping you carry your baby longer.
- Shots: You can get a shot every week:
At home by a home healthcare nurse or trained family member.
- Suppositories: You can place a suppository in your vagina every night before bed.
Are there any side effects?
There are no harmful effects on your baby. Shots may cause minor discomfort at the spot where they’re given. Headache, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea may occur. Suppositories sometimes cause headache and vaginal dryness.