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Who should receive a surfactant?

Premature babies and newborns at high risk for respiratory distress syndrome might need a medication known as an artificial lung surfactant. Infants born before 28 weeks have not developed their own surfactant yet; and a baby born before week 35 will have underdeveloped surfactants. Not every premature baby needs surfactants. A doctor will decide if your baby should receive surfactant replacement therapy by doing a physical exam and also viewing chest x-rays.

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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.