Journal of Bone and Mineral Metabolism

, Volume 25, Issue 3, pp 172–178 | Cite as

Levels of bone collagen markers in preterm infants: relation to antenatal glucocorticoid treatment

  • Eftichia Korakaki
  • Dimitrios Gourgiotis
  • Agisilaos Aligizakis
  • Antonia Manoura
  • Eleftheria Hatzidaki
  • Emmanuel Giahnakis
  • Antonios Marmarinos
  • Maria Kalmanti
  • Christina Giannakopoulou


Although the beneficial effects of antenatally administered glucocorticoids are well documented, data on the potential of adverse consequences are limited. The objective of this study was to determine the effects of antenatally administered glucocorticoids on biochemical markers of bone metabolism of 55 preterm infants with a gestational age of 24–34 weeks who were enrolled in the study. Neonates were divided into two groups according to antenatal exposure to corticosteroids. There were no significant differences between the groups in clinical characteristics and anthropometric variables. We studied blood levels of osteocalcin (OC), carboxy-terminal propeptide of type I procollagen (PICP), and carboxy-terminal telopeptide of type I collagen (ICTP) at the time of delivery, on postnatal day 10, and at 2 and 4 months of life. Comparing the groups, we found statistically significant reduction in PICP levels at birth in corticosteroid-exposed neonates (P < 0.05). The levels of bone markers increased progressively on the first days of life. There were no significant differences between groups in bone markers at 10 days or at 2 and 4 months of life. We found no significant difference for bone markers between groups of infants exposed to single or repeated maternal corticosteroid treatments. In summary, antenatal glucocorticoid treatments are suggested to have a negative impact on fetal bone formation as reflected by low PICP levels at birth. However, this negative effect on bone markers seems to be a temporary effect that subsides on the first days of life and afterward.

Key words

antenatal glucocorticoids preterm infant bone collagen markers 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Tokyo 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eftichia Korakaki
    • 1
  • Dimitrios Gourgiotis
    • 2
  • Agisilaos Aligizakis
    • 3
  • Antonia Manoura
    • 1
  • Eleftheria Hatzidaki
    • 1
  • Emmanuel Giahnakis
    • 4
  • Antonios Marmarinos
    • 2
  • Maria Kalmanti
    • 4
  • Christina Giannakopoulou
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of NeonatologyUniversity of CreteHeraklionGreece
  2. 2.2nd Pediatric DepartmentUniversity of AthensAthensGreece
  3. 3.Department of OrthopaedicsUniversity of CreteCreteGreece
  4. 4.Pediatric DepartmentUniversity of CreteCreteGreece

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