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Women Falling Short on Birth Defect Prevention

Posted 6 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Oct. 13, 2017 – Only a third of women are taking a multivitamin containing folic acid – a nutrient known to prevent serious birth defects – before they know they're pregnant, a new survey has found. The poll, conducted by the March of Dimes, also revealed significant racial disparities: Just 10 percent of black women and 27 percent of Hispanic women of childbearing age report taking multivitamins with folic acid before pregnancy. "One of the things that's striking for us is how much more we need to make sure women understand the importance of being healthy before pregnancy," said Stacey Stewart, president of the March of Dimes Foundation. "Half of all pregnancies are unexpected, which means women of childbearing age need to be doing all they can to be healthy in the event they do get pregnant," she said. In the United States, more than 120,000 babies – about 3 percent of all ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Female Infertility, Folic Acid, Ovulation Induction, Vitamin/Mineral Supplementation during Pregnancy/Lactation, Spina bifida, Primary Ovarian Failure, Follicle Stimulation, Folacin-800, Ethinyl Estradiol/folic Acid/levonorgestrel, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation, Calcium/folic Acid/ginger/pyridoxine, Folic Acid/lactobacillus Casei, Cyanocobalamin/Folic Acid/Pyridoxine/Strontium Gluconate, Ortho D, Hemocyte-F, Focalgin-B, Folvite, Nephro-Fer RX

Fertility Tests May Not Be Best Gauge of Your Biological Clock

Posted 9 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 10, 2017 – Women in their 30s and early 40s who want to know whether their biological clocks are running out should skip fertility testing, a new study suggests. Fertility clinics commonly use blood and urine tests to assess the quantity and quality of eggs remaining in a woman's ovaries – information that clinicians can use in making decisions about treating infertile women. However, a study in the Oct. 10 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association found that these tests cannot predict whether a woman in her later reproductive years will get pregnant naturally. "We were hoping to see that these biomarkers would predict a woman's ability to get pregnant, but we didn't find that," said Dr. Anne Steiner, the study's lead author. Steiner, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, said there's "huge interest" in ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Female Infertility, Ovulation Induction, Vitamin/Mineral Supplementation during Pregnancy/Lactation, Primary Ovarian Failure, Follicle Stimulation

Could Folic Acid Fight a Cause of Autism?

Posted 8 Sep 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Sept. 8, 2017 – By taking folic acid around the time of conception, mothers-to-be may reduce their child's risk of pesticide-related autism, a new study suggests. "We found that if the mom was taking folic acid during the window around conception, the risk associated with pesticides seemed to be attenuated," said study first author Rebecca Schmidt. "Mothers should try to avoid pesticides. But if they live near agriculture, where pesticides can blow in, this might be a way to counter those effects," said Schmidt. She is an assistant professor of public health sciences at the University of California, Davis. It's estimated that one in 68 U.S. children has an autism spectrum disorder, which can range from mild to severe. There is no single cause, but research suggests a combination of genetic and environmental influences plays a role, according to the U.S. National Institutes of ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Plan B, Mirena, Nexplanon, Depo-Provera, Provera, NuvaRing, Sprintec, Implanon, Ortho Tri-Cyclen, Tri-Sprintec, Microgestin Fe 1/20, Yasmin, Plan B One-Step, Loestrin 24 Fe, Ortho Evra, TriNessa, Lutera, Mononessa

America's New Dads Are Older Than Ever

Posted 30 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 30, 2017 – New dads may sport a few more gray hairs than in years past, a U.S. study finds. The average age of new fathers has risen in recent decades, research shows, raising questions about the possible social and public health impact. The study, which analyzed federal birth records, found that fathers of newborns are now 3.5 years older, on average, than their counterparts in the early 1970s. And the percentage of births to fathers older than 40 has more than doubled – from about 4 percent in 1972, to 9 percent in 2015. The pattern is not surprising, since it parallels what's been seen among U.S. women. But much less research has explored the changing demographics of American fathers, according to senior researcher Dr. Michael Eisenberg. "I think it's important for us to pay attention to these demographic shifts and what their implications could be for society," ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Female Infertility, Delivery, Ovulation Induction, Oligospermia, Primary Ovarian Failure, Follicle Stimulation, Cesarean Section, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Do Flame Retardants Hinder Infertility Treatments?

Posted 25 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Aug. 25, 2017 – Researchers have linked higher exposure to a type of flame retardant to a greater likelihood that in-vitro fertilization won't work. "Couples undergoing IVF and trying to improve their chances of success by reducing their exposure to environmental chemicals may want to opt for products that are flame retardant-free," said senior study author Russ Hauser. He is a professor of reproductive physiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston. The study is said to be the first to look at possible connections between pregnancy and exposure to organophosphate flame retardants, also known as PFRs. These are used in the manufacturing of polyurethane foam products, and are found in upholstered furniture, baby supplies and gym mats. "These findings suggest that exposure to PFRs may be one of many risk factors for lower reproductive success," study first ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Female Infertility, Ovulation Induction, Primary Ovarian Failure, Follicle Stimulation

Dad-to-Be's Age Can Affect Fertility Treatment Success

Posted 10 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, July 10, 2017 – A man's age makes a difference in whether or not a couple undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF) ends up having a baby, a new study suggests. The older the potential dad-to-be, the less likely the couple will have a live birth from IVF, the research showed. For the study, the investigators examined nearly 19,000 IVF cycles performed with more than 7,700 couples in Massachusetts. The women were divided into four age groups: under 30; 30 to 35 years; 35 to 40 years; and 40 to 42 years. As expected, the live birth rate was lowest in couples where the female was aged 40 to 42. In this group, the age of the male had no impact. However, when the woman was younger, the age of the man seemed to have a significant effect on childbirth success, according to the report. For example, the live birth rate for couples with a female younger than 30 and a male aged 40 to 42 was ... Read more

Related support groups: Female Infertility, Ovulation Induction, Oligospermia, Primary Ovarian Failure, Follicle Stimulation

Most Relationships Survive Struggles With Infertility

Posted 7 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 7, 2017 – There's good news for couples who are struggling to conceive. Those who are undergo fertility treatment are no more likely to break up, according to a new study. It's been suggested that the disappointment of infertility and the stress of treatment can push relationships to the breaking point. But a study of more than 40,000 women in Denmark who had fertility treatment between 1994 and 2009 found no link between it and separation or divorce. Researchers said 20 percent split up within 16 years, compared to 22 percent of women who were not treated. The study was presented this week at the annual meeting of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology in Geneva, Switzerland. Researcher Mariana Martins said the findings should reassure couples who have had or are considering in vitro fertilization. "Findings on the security of relationships and ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Female Infertility, Ovulation Induction, Oligospermia, Primary Ovarian Failure, Follicle Stimulation

Heart Disease: A Price Humans Pay for Fertility?

Posted 22 Jun 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, June 22, 2017 – Certain genes linked to heart disease may also improve your chances of having children, a new study suggests. Australian researchers said the findings seem to offer a potential explanation for why evolution has allowed these genes to persist for centuries. While lifestyle is clearly important in heart disease risk, scientists have found many genes also influence those odds. "Genes play a very important role in coronary artery disease risk across an individual's lifetime," said study author Sean Byars, a research fellow at the University of Melbourne. In fact, it's estimated that genes account for about 50 percent of the risk. The rest, he said, is due to other factors, including habits like smoking and eating a poor diet. Heart disease is a major killer worldwide, and it has long plagued humanity. Scientists have found evidence of clogged arteries in Egyptian ... Read more

Related support groups: Heart Disease, Female Infertility, Ovulation Induction, Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Ischemic Heart Disease, Primary Ovarian Failure, Follicle Stimulation

Century-Old Technique May Help Infertile Couples Conceive Without IVF

Posted 18 May 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, May 18, 2017 – A 100-year-old medical treatment could help infertile women get pregnant without undergoing pricey in vitro fertilization (IVF), a new study suggests. The method was first used in 1917 and involves flushing a woman's fallopian tubes with an iodized poppy seed oil. "Over the past century, pregnancy rates among infertile women reportedly increased after their tubes had been flushed with either water or oil during" a dye test of the fallopian tubes under X-ray, explained study lead researcher Ben Mol. He's with the University of Adelaide in Australia. "Until now, it has been unclear whether the type of solution used in the procedure was influencing the change in fertility," Mol said in a university news release. "Our results have been even more exciting than we could have predicted, helping to confirm that an age-old medical technique still has an important place ... Read more

Related support groups: Female Infertility, Ovulation Induction, Diagnosis and Investigation, Primary Ovarian Failure, Follicle Stimulation, Body Imaging

Health Insurance a Key to IVF Success, Researchers Say

Posted 28 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, March 28, 2017 – Having health insurance that covers in vitro fertilization (IVF) boosts the odds the treatment will lead to childbirth, a new study finds. For women undergoing IVF, "the biggest hurdle may not be the fertility treatment, but the cost," said study lead author Dr. Emily Jungheim of Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. A single IVF treatment costs $12,000 to $17,000, according to the American Pregnancy Association. If the first treatment fails, many women can't afford to try again, Jungheim's team said. The study included nearly 1,600 IVF patients at the university's Fertility and Reproductive Medicine Center, between 2001 and 2010. Of those women, 56 percent had insurance that covered IVF. The others paid for the treatment themselves. Women with IVF coverage were slightly younger than those without. Seven out of 10 who had insurance coverage ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Female Infertility, Delivery, Ovulation Induction, Oligospermia, Primary Ovarian Failure, Follicle Stimulation, Cesarean Section, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Young Cancer Survivors Can Face Higher Risk of Pregnancy Complications

Posted 23 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, March 23, 2017 – Surviving a cancer when young may leave some women with another health issue: An increased risk for certain pregnancy complications. That's the conclusion of a new study of more than 15,000 births to teen and young adult women, aged 15 to 39, living in North Carolina. Those who were cancer survivors had a higher risk for preterm birth, cesarean delivery and low birth weight infants, the researchers said. "While we believe these findings are something women should be aware of, we still have a lot of work to do to understand why this risk is becoming apparent, and whether or not the children who are born preterm to these women go on to develop any health concerns," said study author Hazel Nichols. She's an assistant professor in the School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina. One ob/gyn said that, given the effects of cancer treatment, ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Cancer, Female Infertility, Delivery, Ovulation Induction, Premature Labor, Primary Ovarian Failure, Cesarean Section, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy

Smartphone Device Sizes Up Sperm Health

Posted 23 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, March 22, 2017 – A new smartphone device has shown early promise as a convenient way for men to check the health of their sperm in the privacy of their home. The infertility test analyzes semen using a disposable rubberized microchip that's designed to enclose and handle samples. The microchip is slid into an attachment that can be plugged into a smartphone. The semen sample is kept within the microchip, so it never enters the smartphone. But a smartphone app is able to scan and video the sample. Roughly five seconds later, an analysis is produced, indicating whether or not the sample meets World Health Organization standards in terms of healthy sperm concentrations and sperm motility (movement). So far, the tests have shown 98 percent accuracy. "We developed the technology, and we have a prototype that seems to work very well, and with high reliability and accuracy," noted ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Erectile Dysfunction, Female Infertility, Performance Anxiety, Ovulation Induction, Oligospermia, Diagnosis and Investigation, Follicle Stimulation

Many U.S. Women Have No Access to Fertility Clinics: Study

Posted 15 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, March 15, 2017 – Nearly 40 percent of reproductive-age women in the United States have little or no access to infertility clinics, according to a new study. Advanced infertility treatments – such as in vitro fertilization – are only available in assisted reproductive technology (ART) clinics, the study authors noted. "Infertility is by itself a difficult issue for couples to face emotionally and financially," said study author Dr. John Harris, of the University of Pittsburgh. He is an assistant professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences at Pitt's School of Medicine. "Based on geography, many couples who are trying to start families may have only one clinic nearby where they seek these services, and many women with infertility do not have any nearby access to these services at all, adding additional anxiety during an already stressful time of life," ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Female Infertility, Ovulation Induction, Primary Ovarian Failure, Follicle Stimulation, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Does a Baby's Sex Affect Mom's Immunity During Pregnancy?

Posted 14 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Feb. 14, 2017 – A baby's gender might affect a pregnant woman's immune system, a new study suggests. For the study, researchers checked levels of immune markers called cytokines in the blood of 80 pregnant women. The researchers found no differences in cytokine levels based on fetal sex. But they did find that "the immune cells of women carrying female fetuses produced more pro-inflammatory cytokines when exposed to bacteria," said principal investigator Amanda Mitchell. "This means that women carrying female fetuses exhibited a heightened inflammatory response when their immune system was challenged, compared to women carrying male fetuses," she explained. Mitchell is a postdoctoral researcher at Ohio State University's Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research. The researchers explained that inflammation is critical in the body's response to viruses, bacteria and chronic ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Emergency Contraception, Postcoital Contraception, Female Infertility, Delivery, Ovulation Induction, Premature Labor, Primary Ovarian Failure, Follicle Stimulation, Cesarean Section, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Daylight Savings Time May Lower Chances of IVF Success for Some: Study

Posted 10 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Feb. 10, 2017 – Daylight savings time may be associated with an increased risk of miscarriage among some women undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF), a new study suggests. Boston Medical Center (BMC) researchers found that miscarriage rates in IVF patients who had a prior miscarriage were much higher among those who received an embryo 21 days after the spring time change than those whose embryo transfers were conducted before or nowhere near the time change. The study did not prove that daylight savings time causes IVF success rates to drop. And there was no link found between miscarriage rates and the fall time change or even the different seasons of the year. The study may improve understanding of how circadian rhythm changes affect fertility and reproduction, according to the researchers. "To our knowledge, there are no other studies looking at the effects of daylight ... Read more

Related support groups: Female Infertility, Ovulation Induction, Premature Labor, Primary Ovarian Failure, Follicle Stimulation, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

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