December 12, 2010 at 5:40 am Comments (0)
A study presented at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium advised against delaying the treatment or hastening delivery for pregnant patients suffering from breast cancer, according to a feature on Bloomberg.com.
Sibylle Loibl, lead author for the study, shared that pregnancy in patients suffering from breast cancer is rare, and affects between 2 percent to three percent of patients. In an e-mail, Loibl shared the following information: “The study demonstrates that it is possible to treat pregnant breast cancer patients close to the standard of care for nonpregnant patients,” adding further that women who are pregnant should continue with their pregnancies, and begin treatment normally.
March 21, 2010 at 11:18 am Comments (0)
After 50 years the many victims of thalidomide (people who were exposed to the drug in utero and suffered major deformations as a result) have finally gotten the public apology they have deserved for many years. The announcement which included the 20-million-pound package was welcomed by many victims, although some were still upset that it had taken so long and others said the wording didn’t seem as if it were a true apology.
466 survivors of the drug (which was marketed as a morning sickness treatment during pregnancy) are eligible for support.
“I know many thalidomiders have waited a long time for this,” Health Minister Mike O’Brien told the House of Commons, using the term for victims of the drug at the end of the 1950s.”The government wishes to express its sincere regret and deep sympathy for the injury and suffering endured by all those affected when expectant mothers took the drug thalidomide between 1958 and 1961.We acknowledge both the physical hardship and the emotional difficulties that have faced both the children affected and their families as a result of this drug and the challenges that many continue to endure, often on a daily basis.”
Thalidomide was banned in 1961 when the effects of the drug (these included limbs, brain damage and other problems) on infants were made public by various media outlets of the era.
Thalidomide campaigner Guy Tweedy described the government apology as “absolutely wonderful”.”I’m highly delighted and so glad that it actually came, 50 years too late, but never mind. It’s an apology not just to thalidomide victims but to the parents and parents who lost their children in the early days.”
Distillers Biochemicals who made the drug paid some 28 million pounds in compensation in the 1970s after a legal battle by the victim’s families. There are roughly 12,000 thalidomide survivors worldwide, according to Thalidomide UK. The first thalidomide victim was born in Germany.
March 14, 2010 at 9:51 am Comments (0)
Derriford Hospital in Plymouth has seen more than its fair share of children born as addicts in the last two years. At least 63 newborns were born with addiction carried over from their mothers and required special drug treatment at another facility in the last two years. Between January 2005 and November of 2009 a total of 127 babies were born to substance-using mothers at Derriford Hospital, 32 such children delivered by staff between January and November 2009; 36 in 2008 (63 of them needed special drug therapy treatment); 28 in 2007; 22 in 2006 and 9 in 2005.
Drug addiction is a serious problem and is even more so for pregnant mothers who often feel that seeking help could pose a threat to themselves or their child or whom are more invested in their addiction than the best interests of the child or themselves. There are over 4,500 babies born at Derriford Hospital every year, the rate of substance abuse cases may seem small in light of this number but the number is high. Infants which are suspected of having substance abuse issues are admitted to a special care ward for observation, children with sufficiently severe drug withdrawal symptoms are put on a treatment program. Generally these programs last at least 10 days and some receive care for two to three weeks or longer.
There are programs in the area for pregnant women facing substance abuse issues which focus of helping the child to be born drug free or less affected by these drugs. Unfortunately they are underutilized and many of these women instead go through the trauma of giving birth to a drug addicted child under the assumption that they have no choice. If these programs women were better informed about such programs perhaps high rates of drug addiction in newborns could be reduced.
February 26, 2010 at 12:28 pm Comment (1)
Getting pregnant is a very huge step that married couples take. Couples take months, even years of planning and preparation before they undergo this life-changing decision, getting their minds and bodies ready for the huge responsibility of raising a child. Here’s a quick list of things that might help you in the process of preparing for pregnancy.
Get a Health Check
Pregnancy can be a very stressful thing for both the couple’s bodies. It is best to check if you and your partner are medically healthy. This is crucial because you need to consider your future child’s health. Your child’s future is in your hands.
If there is a history of medical conditions on either side such as diabetes or heart conditions, you should let your physician know about it. Pregnancy can be very stressful to your wife’s heart and this can be very dangerous for both mother and child. Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) can be passed on to your baby during pregnancy, so it is important you undergo a full check up before you plan on conceiving.
Stress has been known to have an effect on blood pressure, hormones and the menstrual cycle. If you are attempting to have a baby, try to relax and eliminate stress in your life.
If you and your wife are into vices such as smoking and drinking, then you should get clean now. Not only are these vices dangerous to your body, it poses many threats to your baby. Smoking, taking drugs and drinking greatly diminishes the chances of getting pregnant and can lead to premature birth, birth-defects and miscarriages.
February 17, 2010 at 4:35 pm Comment (1)
A great understanding of a woman’s fertility is beginning to reveal why 30 is a point where women feel their biological clocks ticking. The study, a partnership between the Universities of Edinburgh and St Andrews, revealed a better estimate of the number of eggs a woman carries in her ovaries from the point at which she’s conceived to the point at which she goes through menopause. The research marks a precedent in the scientific community, it’s the first time that the human ovarian reserve has ever been followed and correctly catalogued from birth to around age 50 when menopause begins. As a result previously standing theories that the human females eggs were limited to a certain number that gradually declined as she aged have been cemented.
The data was based on British, European and American information on the subject. Apparently a woman’s ovarian reserve peaks at about 20 weeks after conception and gradually declines as she ages and approaches menopause. While previous studies tracked the decline of a woman’s reserve until menopause none had determined information from conception. Based on this research data it has been established that in 95% of women only 12% of all eggs created still remain by the time she reaches the age of 30 and only 3% remain at the age of 40. These findings could have a major effect on fertility treatments and understanding of the way a woman’s body begins to become less fertile as she ages.
January 30, 2010 at 7:59 am Comments (2)
A Silicon Valley start-up is claiming that it can help eradicate more than 100 genetic disorders by alerting parents-to-be who have the carrier genes before they conceive. Counsyl, is a company that is selling a test that they claim is able to tell couples whether they are at risk of having children with a range of inherited diseases, such as cystic fibrosis, Tay-Sachs, sickle cell anemia, spinal muscular atrophy and Pompe disease. Once these parents are told about the traits they carry they can move forward using in vitro fertilization combined with genetic testing of the embryos to avoid bearing children who would have these incurable and commonly fatal childhood diseases.
While there are already tests available to look for certain genetic disorders many others aren’t able to be detected by current testing and leave parents in the dark until their child has already become ill. These tests are also very cost prohibitive ranging from hundreds to thousands of dollars. The Counsyl test costs $349 for an individual or $698 for a couple and analyzes DNA from saliva samples. The test, if it proves effective, could make help many families to overcome long standing fertility and genetic issues that made having children a painful experience. As yet the ability of the tests remain unknown however because no papers have been printed about its results or approach. Despite this Counsyl claims that it has already administered thousands of the tests which are already offered by more than 100 fertility clinics around the country.
Counsyl executives say 35 to 40 percent of people tested are carriers for at least one disease in the test. In about 0.6 percent to 0.8 percent of cases, they say, both members of the couple are carriers for the same disease.
January 17, 2010 at 9:07 am Comment (1)
According to research in Canada women who are trying to become pregnant need to be more certain about the drugs they take before pregnancy even begins and should discuss them with doctors to certify that they won’t interfere with the child’s health. Why? According to this research many women are still taking drugs that are known to have potential effects like birth defects.
Drugs like those given for epilepsy are necessary during pregnancy despite their potential risk to fetal growth. But some other drugs such as those that treat anxiety, severe acne, psychiatric drugs, antibiotics, and numerous prescription drugs for heart disease and medical conditions can be stopped and avoided during pregnancy. In fact any woman who has a chronic condition of any sort, especially those which involve the use of regular drug treatment should seriously go over the side effects of those drugs with their doctor before attempting to become pregnant. Minimizing or removing those risks before or during pregnancy can be vital for the baby’s health and in some cases survival.
Between January 1998 and the last day of 2002 prescriptions filled by pregnant women for drugs available at the time and known to pose fetal risks were analyzed. 56% of the 109,344 pregnant women filled at least 1 prescription and a total of 6.3 percent (or 6,871 women) had a medical prescription filled with potentially harmful effects to their child. The women who did so had a higher incidence of termination and children who were born with major birth defects. In these cases roughly 47% lost their child and 6 % had a miscarriage. In a the group of mothers who hadn’t taken any of these drugs during their pregnancy the rate of termination was 36% and the rate of miscarriage was lower than 5%. Of 2,842 infants affected by these medications 8.2% dealt with birth defects as a result. This was in stark contrast to the 7.1% of 59,287 infants who weren’t exposed that were shown to have birth defects.
November 8, 2009 at 2:49 pm Comments (0)
Doctors now say that the popular home version of the fetal monitoring device used by doctors may actually make it more likely a mother will wait to seek treatment than if she had gone without it. The false sense of security these monitors offer is to blame, causing mothers to wait unaware that the machine may not be catching their child’s heartbeat but their own among other dangers. This very thing happened to one mother who waited several days to seek medical help believing that she heard the steady heartbeat of her child, prompting the warning.
Fetal heart monitors are not always valid ultrasound machines and regardless of quality shouldn’t be treated as a valid way to monitor a baby’s safety and wellbeing. Some companies make the entertainment purposes of these machines clear while others don’t, the child’s safety is at risk if the parents don’t seek help when it is needed.
While the fetal heart rate is part of the overall safety and health status of an unborn baby it’s only a small part and without training can very easily be misheard or misconstrued as normal. If there are any major changes in the overall movement of the baby, the way you feel or there are any signs that make you concerned for the safety of your child it’s best to seek medical care right away to verify the health of the child and yourself. While home monitors can be a great way of listening to the child they should be regarded as the entertainment and interaction tools they are.
October 30, 2009 at 8:00 am Comments (0)
Pregnancy prevention methods were first introduced in response to unwanted pregnancies and early parenting. This took place during the 1960s to 1970s. At this point in time, researchers found the need of educating the populace about responsible parenthood. Social services were extended to pregnant women in their adolescent and adult stages.
During the first two decades of extending these social services, some of the contraceptive methods were also introduced. Birth control methods using a condom and other contraceptives were also launched. These methods were created not only for pregnancy prevention but for decreasing STD possibilities as well.
In the 1980′s, researchers saw the need to bring the pregnancy prevention measures into a better approach. Aside from education on unwanted pregnancies, the reproduction process was also taught to concerned individuals. Proper utilization of contraception methods and the value of sexual abstinence were also discussed.
During the 1990′s, another program was included in these pregnancy prevention methods. By this time, the services were extended due to the spread of immune deficiency syndromes. This period also led to production of effective contraceptive pills and encouragement of condom use. In some areas of the country, abortive pills were permitted for special cases.
For full version of this article, please visit “Evolution of Pregnancy Prevention Methods in History“.
October 26, 2009 at 8:23 am Comment (1)
While contraception is not acceptable in other beliefs, others would rather embrace the practice than suffer the consequences of having more children later on. In this regard, family planning is a must for most couples who believe in responsible parenthood. For those who have prepared for pregnancy, the ovulation predictor test is of great help though.
The ovulation predictor test revolves around the principle of giving a forecast for women who want to increase their chances of getting pregnant. The test detects monthly luteinizing hormone or LH peaks. The LH peak is a period when the LH has substantially increased. From here, the ovulation period comes next. During this period when a woman is most fertile, partners should have sexual intercourse.
The ovulation predictor test comes with a kit. A woman has to take her urine sample then place it inside the container. A vertical strip is utilized in order to detect if she is fertile or not.
For full version of this article, please visit “How Does Ovulation Predictor Test Work?“.
This kit however may not apply to all. The results will not be as favorable to women in their forties since this is a period where the LH hormone increases. In this case, ovulation period is not predicted by the test.