The safety of progestogen in the prevention of preterm birth: Meta-analysis of neonatal mortality

Ki Hoon Ahn, Na Young Bae, Soon Cheol Hong, Ji Sung Lee, Eun Hee Lee, Hee Jung Jee, Geum Joon Cho, Min Jeong Oh, Hai Joong Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


The safety of preventive progestogen therapy for preterm birth remains to be established. This meta-analysis aimed to evaluate the effects of preventive progestogen therapy on neonatal mortality. Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) on the preventive use of progestogen therapy, published between October 1971 and November 2015, were identified by searching MEDLINE/PubMed, EMBASE, Scopus,, Cochrane Library databases, CINAHL, POPLINE, and LILACS using "progesterone" and "preterm birth" as key terms. We conducted separate analyses according to the type of progestogen administered and plurality of the pregnancy. Twenty-two RCTs provided data on 11,188 neonates. Preventive progestogen treatment in women with a history of preterm birth or short cervical length was not associated with increased risk of neonatal death compared to placebo in all analyzed progestogen types and pregnancy conditions. The pooled relative risks (95% confidence interval) of neonatal mortality were 0.69 (0.31-1.54) for vaginal progestogen in singleton pregnancies, 0.6 (0.33-1.09) for intramuscular progestogen in singleton pregnancies, 0.96 (0.51-1.8) for vaginal progestogen in multiple pregnancies, and 0.96 (0.49-1.9) for intramuscular progestogen in multiple pregnancies. The results of this meta-analysis suggest that administration of preventive progestogen treatment to women at risk for preterm birth does not appear to negatively affect neonatal mortality in single or multiple pregnancies regardless of the route of administration.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-20
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Perinatal Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jan 1


  • Neonatal death
  • preterm birth
  • progestogen

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology


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