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October 3, 2001

Antenatal Corticosteroids—Too Much of a Good Thing?

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliation: Department of Pediatrics, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, Md.

JAMA. 2001;286(13):1628-1630. doi:10.1001/jama.286.13.1628

Changes in management regarding care of neonates resemble the swings of a pendulum. As the force of gravity keeps a pendulum from swinging too far, continuing medical research keeps management from becoming too extreme. Research permits evaluation of the risks and benefits of a particular treatment, advancing knowledge to refine the risk-benefit ratio and alter clinical care. Unfortunately, despite apparently proper research protocols, physicians do not always correctly understand risks and benefits regarding any specific issue. Therefore, occasionally the recommended management may become transiently out of phase with the ultimate "best practice."

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