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JOURNAL ARTICLE

Magnesium sulfate use for fetal neuroprotection

Kathleen F Brookfield, Abigail Vinson
Current Opinion in Obstetrics & Gynecology 2019, 31 (2): 110-115
30747745

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The aim of this review is to describe the proposed mechanisms of action of magnesium sulfate for fetal neuroprotection, different dosing regimens of the drug that have shown benefit, and to review recent pharmacokinetic studies of the drug to better inform clinicians regarding expected benefits and remaining research questions.

RECENT FINDINGS: Retrospective secondary analysis of the beneficial effects of antenatal magnesium sulfate trial database and prospective pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic modeling indicate magnesium sulfate administration for duration longer than 18 h, given within 12 h of delivery, and maintaining a maternal serum level of 4.1 mg/dl may maximize the neuroprotective benefits of the drug.

SUMMARY: Magnesium sulfate in some dosage given before very preterm pregnancy delivery is beneficial for fetal neuroprotection. The exact dose, duration, and timing of administration to maximize this benefit may be more precisely studied using pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic modeling techniques before conducting larger randomized trials.

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