Effect of antenatal dexamethasone therapy on maternal plasma human chorionic gonadotrophin, oestradiol and progesterone
Source: Human Reproduction, Volume 14, Number 2, February 1999 , pp. 303-306(4)
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Abstract:The aim of this study was to determine whether the current regimen of dexamethasone administration to induce fetal lung maturation affected the circulating concentrations of placental hormone. A standard regimen of dexamethasone that comprised two doses of 12-mg intramuscular injections, 12 h apart was administered to 12 pregnant women to promote fetal lung maturation in anticipation of premature delivery before 34 completed weeks of gestation. Blood samples were collected before starting the dexamethasone therapy, 24 h, and 48 h after completing therapy for the measurement of the plasma concentrations of human chorionic gonadotrophin (HCG), oestradiol and progesterone. There was a progressive fall in the plasma concentrations of HCG following dexamethasone therapy (P = 0.049 and P = 0.034, 24-h and 48-h post therapy respectively). There was an initial fall in the plasma concentrations of oestradiol after dexamethasone therapy (z = 3.059; P = 0.002, 24-h post therapy), which recovered by 48 h (P = 0.239). There was no difference between the plasma concentrations of progesterone at the three time points. The effect of dexamethasone on HCG concentrations suggests that it has a direct inhibitory effect on placental hormone synthesis or secretion. Further studies are needed to define the mechanism of action of dexamethasone on placental HCG production.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: 1: Section of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Imperial College School of Medicine at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, 2: Department of Chemical Pathology, Imperial College School of Medicine at Charing Cross Hospital and 3: Department of Medical Oncology, Imperial College School of Medicine at Charing Cross Hospital, London, UK
Publication date: 1999-02-01
- Human Reproduction features full-length, peer-reviewed papers reporting original research, clinical case histories, as well as opinions and debates on topical issues. Papers published cover the scientific and medical aspects of reproductive physiology and pathology, endocrinology, andrology, gonad function, gametogenesis, fertilization, embryo development, implantation, pregnancy, genetics, genetic diagnosis, oncology, infectious disease, surgery, contraception, infertility treatment, psychology, ethics and social issues. The highest scientific and editorial standard is maintained throughout the journal along with a rapid rate of publication.