Azithromycin if taken during pregnancy reduces LBW and premature births: Lancet
A common antibiotic azithromycin has been found to reduce low birth weight and premature births, if taken during pregnancy, in countries where malaria is endemic, according to a research review led by the Murdoch Children's Research Institute (MCRI).
The researchers found that azithromycin reduced low birth weight and prematurity in Africa and Asia but didn't lower infant deaths, infections and hospital admissions.
The systematic review has been published in The Lancet EClinicalMedicine.
The researchers reviewed 14 studies undertaken in African and Asian countries, involving 17,594 participants.
"This review found that there was uncertainty about the potential benefits of this intervention on neonatal deaths, admissions and infections, and potential harmful effects on stillbirth despite biological reasons why this intervention may have benefits for these outcomes," she said.