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What kinds of treatments do premature infants get?

According to Sherin Devaskar, M.D., physician-in-chief of Mattel Children’s Hospital UCLA and chair of the Department of Pediatrics at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, premature and other high-risk infants are admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and monitored constantly until they are able to suck, swallow and breathe without help from a ventilator and maintain their body temperature.

Treatments that support their development include surfactant replacement and gentle ventilation to reduce inflammation to premature lungs resulting from mechanical ventilation, total parenteral nutrition to prevent malnourishment, photo therapy to reduce jaundice, cooling to prevent long-term neurological injury caused by low oxygen or low blood flow before or during delivery, or the extracorporeal membrane oxygenator to assist some babies with breathing during transition from the womb to the outside world.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.