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June 13, 2006, 9:22 PM CT

Asherman's Syndrome Poses Pregnancy Problems

Asherman's Syndrome Poses Pregnancy Problems Dr. Fermin Barrueto, Chief of Endoscopy and Pelvic Reconstruction at Mercy
A somewhat rare condition could cause significant problems for women trying to become pregnant. Asherman's syndrome affects the walls of the uterus, which stick together as a result of scar tissue following surgery. Asherman's, which may occur following a D&C (dilatation and curettage, a procedure to scrape and collect the tissue in the uterus), may causes problems for a woman trying to get pregnant or carry one full term.

As per Dr. Fermin Barrueto, Chief of Endoscopy and Pelvic Reconstruction at Mercy, mild to moderate cases of Asherman's syndrome can mean reduced menstrual flow and frequent miscarriage. When Asherman's syndrome becomes severe, he said menstrual flow completely stops and there's no pregnancy. "The great majority don't even know they have this condition and there is a lack of space for baby to grow," Barrueto said.

Significant research brought Brenner to Barrueto in an effort fix her condition with surgery -- a very delicate operation.

"What we have to do is put a telescope inside the uterus and make a new cavity, it has to be done under laproscopic control," Barrueto said.

Barreuto said the most common scenarios for Asherman's syndrome to occur is after a postpartum dilatation and curettage, or sometimes after having fibroids removed.........

Posted by: Emily      Permalink         Source


June 13, 2006, 0:32 AM CT

Pregnancy Cravings Can Harm Your Oral Health

Pregnancy Cravings Can Harm Your Oral Health
Pregnant women may often make ice cream runs to calm their cravings as they wait for their baby's arrival. Other women suffering from an eating disorder called pica, will have cravings for ice, freezer frost, or even soil.

Pica combined with bulimia can have adverse effects on an individual's oral health during pregnancy and also can be hard to diagnose and treat during those nine months, as per a research studyreported in the May/June 2006 issue of General Dentistry, the Academy of General Dentistry's (AGD) clinical, peer-reviewed journal.

Pica, commonly a secretive behavior, is a compulsive eating disorder in which sufferers have a constant appetite for non-nutritious substances. Bulimia is a condition in which patients overeat and then purge due to a fear of gaining weight. While the conditions' association and cause during pregnancy are not known, a number of suggest cultural and physiological factors are to blame. Others believe depression or iron and zinc deficiencies during pregnancy could be a factor.

"Eating disorders can cause serious erosion of the tooth's enamel, as well as sensitivity, thinning, and chipping," says Paula Jones, DDS, FAGD, AGD spokesperson. "Dentists can detect the signs and provide patients with therapy options."

While women often believe they should avoid dental care during pregnancy, it is very important for those suffering from eating disorders to continue with their dental visits. "Dentists are often the first to witness the physical effects of an eating disorder on an individual's oral health," says Dr. Jones. "A number of of those who suffer will not self-report the problem."........

Posted by: Emily      Permalink         Source


June 7, 2006, 11:34 PM CT

Ace Inhibitors Implicated In Birth Defects

Ace Inhibitors Implicated In Birth Defects
The Food and Drug Administration is examining study data from Vanderbilt University Medical Center researchers, published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine, to determine if new warnings should be placed on common blood pressure medications indicating an increased risk of birth defects for babies whose mothers take these medications during the first trimester of pregnancy.

The study, led by William Cooper, M.D., M.P.H., associate professor of Pediatrics at the Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt, found infants born to mothers who took angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (ACE inhibitors) during the first trimester of pregnancy had an increased risk of major birth defects, compared with infants whose mothers did not take these medications.

Out of 29,507 infants whose TennCare records were examined for the study, 209 were exposed to ACE inhibitors in the first trimester only. When those babies were compared to the rest of the population, including babies exposed to other types of antihypertensive medications, they had more than double the risk of major birth defects, particularly of the heart and central nervous system.

Cooper is first author on the study, which includes co-authors from the Departments of Pediatrics, Preventive Medicine and Biostatistics.........

Posted by: Emily      Permalink         Source


May 21, 2006, 9:32 AM CT

Woman's Chances Of Having Twins Can Be Modified By Diet

Woman's Chances Of Having Twins Can Be Modified By Diet
An obstetrician well known for his care of and research into multiple-birth pregnancies has found that dietary changes can affect a woman's chances of having twins, and that her overall chance is determined by a combination of diet and heredity. By comparing the twinning rate of vegan women, who consume no animal products, with that of women who do eat animal products, Gary Steinman, MD, PhD, an attending doctor at Long Island Jewish (LIJ) Medical Center in New Hyde Park, NY, found that the women who consume animal products, specifically dairy, are five times more likely to have twins. The study is reported in the May 2006 issue of the Journal of Reproductive Medicine, available May 20.

The Lancet recently published an invited comment by Dr. Steinman on dietary influences on twinning in the journal's May 6 issue.

The culprit may be insulin-like growth factor (IGF), a protein that is released from the liver of animals -- including humans -- in response to growth hormone, circulates in the blood and makes its way into the animal's milk. IGF increases the sensitivity of the ovaries to follicle stimulating hormone, thereby increasing ovulation. Some studies also suggest that IGF may help embryos survive in the early stages of development. The concentration of IGF in the blood is about 13 percent lower in vegan women than in women who consume dairy.........

Posted by: Emily      Permalink         Source


May 14, 2006, 3:38 PM CT

Inducing Labor Carries Risks

Inducing Labor Carries Risks
Women who have their labor induced or are given medicine to stimulate contractions are at greater risk of developing chorioamnionitis, an infection of the placental tissues and amniotic fluid, new Saint Louis University research finds.

Elisabeth Erekson, M.D., a resident in obstetrics, gynecology and women's health at Saint Louis University School of Medicine, presented her research at the annual meeting of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists in May.

Her advice to women who are tired of being pregnant and thinking of speeding things along by asking their doctors to induce labor? Let nature take its course.

"Induction is not a non-malignant process and is associated with risk factors, one of them being an infection inside the uterus. Women who are tired of being pregnant and looking at induction for elective reasons need to closely consider that an elective induction may have more risk than spontaneous labor," she said.

"So, enjoy the pregnancy. You won't be getting lots of rest after delivery."

Chorioamnionitis can lead to severe infections in the mother with risks of sepsis, abnormal bleeding and future infertility, as well as infections in the newborn baby.........

Posted by: Emily      Permalink         Source


May 14, 2006, 3:13 PM CT

Lose weight before getting pregnant

Lose weight before getting pregnant
Doctors should advise overweight moms considering another pregnancy to take off extra weight first because they are at greater risk of having big babies, a new Saint Louis University study finds.

Scientists found that moms who don't lose the weight they gained during the first pregnancy and continue to gain after their first child is born are at risk of having bigger babies than mothers who do not gain weight between pregnancies. A patient's prepregnancy weight remained the strongest predictor for the birth of a large infant in the next pregnancy.

"Our advice to moms is to take off the weight they gained during one pregnancy and not to gain weight between pregnancies," said Robert Blaskiewicz, M.D., professor of obstetrics, gynecology and women's health at Saint Louis University.

Large babies can be more difficult and take longer to deliver than normal weight babies because they are too big to fit easily through the birth canal. Large birth weight also might lead to a cesarean delivery.

"The ideal is to have their weight as close to normal as possible. Weight gain between pregnancies doubles the risk of having a 'large for gestational age' baby."

Dr. Blaskiewicz presented the research, which was conducted in conjunction with the Saint Louis University School of Public Health, at the May meeting of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.........

Posted by: Emily      Permalink         Source


May 12, 2006, 6:48 AM CT

Many Pregnant Women Lack HIV Testing

Many Pregnant Women Lack HIV Testing
Despite state laws requiring that every pregnant woman be offered HIV testing multiple times during pregnancy, about 20 percent of women reach their third trimester without it, as per a review of Florida women from 2003-04, scientists say.

Rapid HIV testing performed on 1,867 women who lacked proof of testing when they reached the delivery room identified one HIV-positive mother and doctors were able to preventively reduce the baby's infection risk, says Dr. Andrew W. Helfgott, chief of the Section of Maternal-Fetal Medicine at the Medical College of Georgia.

"Rapid testing is an easy, relatively inexpensive means of identifying women who are infected, treating them and their babies and preventing perinatal infection," says Dr. Helfgott.

Rapid testing of the 1,379 women cost $27,000, far less than the lifetime cost of treating even one infected child, he says.

Availability of the 20-minute, highly accurate tests that can be used even in the last minutes of pregnancy should preclude HIV infection in every newborn, he says. Still, an estimated 280 to 370 HIV-infected children are born each year in this country.

Dr. Helfgott was directing a high-risk pregnancy program in Pensacola, Fla., in 2002 when Florida led the nation with 37 perinatal transmissions, three of which occurred in the relatively small town where he worked. He started working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Florida Department of Health Bureau of HIV officials to focus attention on the importance of testing.........

Posted by: Emily      Permalink         Source


May 4, 2006, 4:52 PM CT

Embryos In 3-D

Embryos In 3-D Three-dimensional computer image of a mouse embryo
Utah and Texas researchers combined miniature medical CT scans with high-tech computer methods to produce detailed three-dimensional images of mouse embryos - an efficient new method to test the safety of medicines and learn how mutant genes cause birth defects or cancer.

"Our method provides a fast, high-quality and inexpensive way to visually explore the 3-D internal structure of mouse embryos so scientists can more easily and quickly see the effects of a genetic defect or chemical damage," says Chris Johnson, a distinguished professor of computer science at the University of Utah.

A study reporting development of the new method - known as "microCT-based virtual histology" - was published recently in PLoS Genetics, an online journal of the Public Library of Science.

The study was led by Charles Keller, a pediatric cancer specialist who formerly worked as a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of University of Utah geneticist Mario Capecchi. Keller now is an assistant professor at the Children's Cancer Research Institute at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio.

University of Utah co-authors of the study are Johnson - who directs the university's Scientific Computing and Imaging Institute - Capecchi, medical student Mark S. Hansen and several members of Johnson's institute: computer science undergraduate Thomas Johnson III, research assistant Lindsey Healey and former associate director Greg M. Jones, who now is state science advisor to Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr.........

Posted by: Emily      Permalink         Source


May 4, 2006, 4:52 PM CT

Embryos In 3-d D

Embryos In 3-d
D Three-dimensional computer image of a mouse embryo
Utah and Texas researchers combined miniature medical CT scans with high-tech computer methods to produce detailed three-dimensional images of mouse embryos - an efficient new method to test the safety of medicines and learn how mutant genes cause birth defects or cancer.

"Our method provides a fast, high-quality and inexpensive way to visually explore the 3-D internal structure of mouse embryos so scientists can more easily and quickly see the effects of a genetic defect or chemical damage," says Chris Johnson, a distinguished professor of computer science at the University of Utah.

A study reporting development of the new method - known as "microCT-based virtual histology" - was published recently in PLoS Genetics, an online journal of the Public Library of Science.

The study was led by Charles Keller, a pediatric cancer specialist who formerly worked as a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of University of Utah geneticist Mario Capecchi. Keller now is an assistant professor at the Children's Cancer Research Institute at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio.

University of Utah co-authors of the study are Johnson - who directs the university's Scientific Computing and Imaging Institute - Capecchi, medical student Mark S. Hansen and several members of Johnson's institute: computer science undergraduate Thomas Johnson III, research assistant Lindsey Healey and former associate director Greg M. Jones, who now is state science advisor to Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr.........

Posted by: Emily      Permalink         Source


May 3, 2006, 11:38 PM CT

PMS: A Fact Of Life Or All In The Mind?

PMS: A Fact Of Life Or All In The Mind?
Premenstrual distress: An unavoidable condition a number of women suffer with relentless regularity. Or is it? Can heterosexual women learn a thing or two from their lesbian sisterhood?

In her keynote talk: "Premenstrual Syndrome and Self-policing: Constructing and Deconstructing Premenstrual Distress in Lesbian and Heterosexual relationships", Professor Jane M Ussher, will put forward her views to delegates of an international 3-day conference for psychology experts to be held at the University of Leicester, entitled "Qualitative Research and Marginalisation."

Professor Ussher is Professor of Women's Health Psychology and Director of the Gender Culture and Health Research at the University of Western Sydney, Australia, and a world-renowned expert in her field.

Her talk draws on her recently published book 'Managing the Monstrous Feminine: Regulating the Reproductive Body' (Routledge, 2006), She commented: "The majority of women experience physical and psychological changes in the premenstrual phase of the cycle, but only some women experience distress associated with these changes, and position them as PMS. My paper argues that this distress and self-diagnosis is associated with practices of self-policing - negative self-judgement, self-silencing, self-sacrifice, over responsibility and self blame.........

Posted by: Emily      Permalink         Source



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Did you know?
The addition of testosterone to hormone therapy in women after menopause enhances their sexual function. However, it may also reduce HDL cholesterol (the "good" cholesterol) in women, according to a systematic review of current evidence."If the reduction in HDL had been associated with an increase in triglycerides [fatty acids] or LDL cholesterol it would be of great concern," said Dr. Susan Davis, professor of medicine at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia, and study co-author "However, as an isolated finding the significance is difficult to interpret." She added, "Testosterone has not been found to alter other coronary heart disease risk factors.".

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