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Isabelle Goyer
Gabrielle Ferland
Ni Ruo
Caroline Morin
Marie-Sophie Brochet
Lucie Morin
Ema Ferreira


antibiotic, pregnancy, azithromycin, premature birth, preterm birth, preterm labour



Since 2006, the empiric use of azithromycin in women at risk of premature birth has become prevalent in our institution without any evidence of its efficacy. Although antibiotics can prolong pregnancy in preterm prolonged rupture of membranes, no published data are available for women with intact membranes.


To describe the purpose of adding azithromycin to the usual treatments (cerclage, tocolysis, rest, etc.) to prolong pregnancy in women with intact membranes who are at risk of or already in preterm labour .


A retrospective observational cohort study was done at a Mother-Child University Hospital Centre. Patients admitted to obstetric ward who received azithromycin between January 1 st , 2006 and August 1 st , 2010 were included. A total of 127 exposed women were matched to 127 controls through medical records and pharmacy software. A time-to-event analysis was done to compare gestational age at the time of the recorded composite event (delivery, or rupture of membranes, or second intervention to prolong pregnancy). To compare proportions of composite event at different time points, χ 2 tests were used.


Patients who received azithromycin had a more severe condition at presentation. Once adjusted for confounding factors, prolongation of pregnancy (HR =1.049; CI 95%: 0.774–1.421 [ p =0.758]) and gestational age at the event (HR=1.200; CI 95%: 0.894–1.609 [ p =0.225]) did not differ between the groups. The proportions of women with an event ≥7 days post-diagnosis or ≥37 gestational weeks were similar .


Azithromycin was added to medical therapy in a more at-risk population and no clear benefit was measured.

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