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Taking baby aspirin while pregnant could reduce preterm birth risk, according to study

Taking baby aspirin while pregnant could reduce preterm birth risk, according to study

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Researchers indicate taking baby aspirin while pregnant could reduce the risk of preterm birth.

It is a tool doctors in the U.S. currently use with certain patients to decrease the risk of preeclampsia, which often leads to preterm birth. This study was done over two years with 12,000 women in India, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Guatemala, Kenya, Pakistan and Zambia, countries that do not have the NICU capacity or other health care resources to care for pre-term births as we have in the United States.

The women who took baby aspirin instead of a placebo had reduced preterm delivery before 37 weeks by 11% and a 14% reduced perinatal mortality, which is when a fetus dies before birth.

Dr. Mary Abernathy with IU Health said the study is very interesting, but women in the U.S. shouldn’t just start taking baby aspirin right away. She said with more research recommendations for baby aspirin could increase.

“We’ve always been searching for the magic bullet to try to figure out how to decrease pre-term birth. Pre-term births is one of the major causes of infant mortality and in Indiana, we have high infant mortality, high maternal mortality, so anything we can do to try to decrease both of those we’re all on board for,” Dr. Abernathy said.

There are steps you can take to increase the chance of a healthy and full-term pregnancy without adding baby aspirin to your routine.

Dr. Abernathy suggests quitting smoking and any illicit drug use, aim to be at a healthy weight when becoming pregnant and also keep birth spacing in mind. Dr. Abernathy said plan at least 18 months between the birth of one baby and the start of a new pregnancy.

If you need help with any of those or want to consider taking baby aspirin during your pregnancy talk to you doctor.