The use of postnatal dexamethasone in premature newborns can be associated with a deleterious neurodevelopmental outcome. The effect of hydrocortisone on developmental outcome in these patients is less clear. We therefore sought to examine the effect of hydrocortisone on early developmental outcome in premature newborns. We retrospectively examined the effect of hydrocortisone on developmental outcome during the first 2 years of life in premature infants <29 weeks gestation at birth. Even though hydrocortisone was used in infants with a greater risk for poor outcome, its use, unless prolonged >7 days, was generally not associated with a worse developmental outcome or higher rate of referral for early intervention. A short course of hydrocortisone in sick premature newborns does not appear to have a deleterious effect on developmental outcome.
- Early intervention
- NICU developmental outcome
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Clinical Neurology