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Hydroxyprogesterone is used to reduce risk of preterm birth (delivery in <37 weeks of pregnancy) in women pregnant with one baby (singleton pregnancy) and who have delivered a premature baby in the past.

How it works

Hydroxyprogesterone belongs to a class of medications called progestins (female hormones). It is a synthetic form of the female hormone progesterone, however the exact mechanism by which it reduces risk of preterm birth is not known.

Common side effects

Pain, Itchy bump, Diarrhoea, Injection site bump, Injection site bruise, Itching, Rash, Limb pain, Skin redness, Swelling


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Expert advice

  • Tell your doctor if you have diabetes, pre-diabetes (high blood sugar levels, but not high enough to be called diabetes) or a family history of diabetes, before taking hydroxyprogesterone.
  • If you are suffering from high blood pressure during pregnancy (preeclampsia), fits (epilepsy), heart or kidney functioning problems, you should be monitored for fluid retention while on treatment with Hydroxyprogesterone.
  • Tell your doctor if you have severe pulsating headaches (migraines), asthma, history of depression or high blood pressure (hypertension), before taking Hydroxyprogesterone.
  • Seek immediate medical attention if you notice any signs of depression or jaundice.
  • Consult your doctor regarding continuing treatment with hydroxyprogesterone after delivery and during breastfeeding.

Frequently asked questions


Q. Is hydroxyprogesterone the same as progesterone?
No. Progesterone is a natural sex hormone produced by the body and hydroxyprogesterone is its synthetic form. Both have different physiological effects and are used for the treatment of different conditions.
Q. Is hydroxyprogesterone safe?
It is relatively safe if used at prescribed doses for the prescribed duration as advised by your doctor.

Content on this page was last updated on 17 October, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)