As flu season approaches, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has updated its recommendations to urge annual flu vaccinations to protect children from this common and unpredictable virus, which can cause serious health problems for otherwise healthy children. The AAP also reaffirms its support for mandatory influenza vaccination for all health care workers nationwide.
The updated recommendations from the AAP are contained in two policy statements in the October 2015 issue of Pediatrics.
“Flu vaccine is the best way we have to protect children against this virus,” said Henry Bernstein, DO, MHCM, FAAP, author of both policy statements. “The flu virus is unpredictable. We cannot always anticipate how severely it will affect different groups of people. Being immunized with the flu vaccine every year significantly reduces the risk of your child being hospitalized due to flu, and it protects other vulnerable members of your family and community.”
In previous years, an estimated 90 percent of pediatric deaths have occurred in unvaccinated children. During the 2014-2015 flu season, 145 children died from influenza-related illness, and many of these children had no underlying medical condition.
Be sure to talk to your pediatrician about this important vaccine. To read more about the AAP recommendations, click here.
Untreated pelvic pain is common among U.S. women in their childbearing years, a new study reveals. The findings suggest that even during routine visits, doctors should ask women about pelvic pain, the investigators said.
“Our study suggests that many reproductive-age women are experiencing but not reporting some form of pelvic pain,” said study author Karen Schliep, U.S. National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, in an institute news release.
“If they aren’t doing so already, gynecologists may want to ask their patients if they’re experiencing pain, as well as the type and precise location of the pain, and offer treatment as appropriate,” she said. “Similarly, women should let their doctors know if they’re in pain.”
The researchers surveyed more than 400 women, aged 18 to 44, at 14 surgical centers in Salt Lake City and San Francisco who were scheduled to undergo medical imaging or surgery for reasons such as infertility, menstrual irregularities, tubal sterilization or pelvic pain. About 40 percent of the women were diagnosed with endometriosis—a condition in which tissue that normally lines the inside of the uterus grows outside of the uterus. Thirty-one percent of the women were diagnosed with other conditions, such as uterine fibroids, ovarian cysts or tumors.
As expected, those with endometriosis were most likely to report pain (44 percent). However, high levels of ongoing pain or recurrent pain during the menstrual cycle were reported by one-third of women without any diagnosed pelvic conditions, according to the study published in the journal Human Reproduction.
If you experience any pain in your pelvic region for a prolonged period of time, talk to your doctor about it.
Morning sickness is a common problem, as about half of all pregnant women experience nausea and vomiting together and 25 percent feel just nauseous. But new recommendations from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) may help.
In an update of its 11-year-old guidelines on treating morning sickness, ACOG now suggests women take vitamin B6 and the antihistamine doxylamine together to treat persistent, disruptive nausea and vomiting. The medications are sold separately over the counter or combined in prescription form.
In addition, ACOG has stopped supporting the use of a commonly used morning sickness drug, ondansetron (Zofran), after reviewing recent data that suggest the drug may be linked to birth defects.
“I think it’s up to each individual patient, in talking with her clinician, to decide what steps they want to take to treat nausea and vomiting,” said Aaron B. Caughey, M.D., Ph.D., a member of ACOG’s Committee on Obstetric Practice who co-authored the new guidelines. “Certainly there are a lot of options that aren’t medications per se, such as eating frequent small meals of simple carbs like crackers . . . or avoiding smells that trigger nausea,” he added. “I think it’s a conversation between a patient and her clinician whether they want to embark on treatment at all.”
We agree—if you experience morning sickness, talk to your doctor about appropriate remedies.
At RSCNJ, we try to be more than just your fertility care providers. Many patients come to feel like family. Take this comment from one of them:
“Great staff! This was obviously an intimidating experience but from the first visit they put us at ease and less than a year later we were hugging the staff and being congratulated. Definitely recommended.”
Many thanks to the family that posted this review on Reputation.com.
Please check out other comments there and on our website too.
No, says the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). Though many commercial tests are being marketed for use in the first trimester to predict the risk of early onset preeclampsia, new recommendations from ACOG say there’s no evidence that the tests help—and they may do harm.
Preeclampsia is a condition in which blood pressure in a pregnant woman can rise to life-threatening levels. It occurs in 5 percent to 10 percent of pregnancies and can lead to preterm birth, complications and death in mothers. It also increases women’s long-term risk of heart disease.
The new ACOG recommendations, published in Obstetrics & Gynecology, state that physicians should take a detailed medical history to assess a woman’s risk factors in the first trimester to screen for early-onset preeclampsia. This is the only screening method for preeclampsia ACOG recommends.
Success with in vitro fertilization (IVF) generally declines as women age, from nearly 24 percent among those aged 38 to 39 to just over 1 percent among women aged 44 and older. But a new study finds that collecting eggs from older women at an earlier stage of fertility treatment could improve the chances of pregnancy.
The study, published in the Journal of Endocrinology, discovered that cells that support the development of eggs in the ovaries lose their function sharply after age 43 because eggs in the ovaries are exposed to hormones normally released only after ovulation. This “false start” greatly reduces the likelihood of pregnancy. However, older women whose eggs were harvested earlier in the fertility treatment process, before they were exposed to the after-ovulation hormones, produced more good-quality embryos and had higher pregnancy rates than those whose eggs were collected later.
“We used to think that aging eggs were responsible for poor IVF success rates in older women, but here we show that it is more due to the aging of the egg’s environment,” the study’s author said in a journal news release. “The chances of reversing damage to an egg are practically zero, and so these findings are exciting because it’s much more hopeful to therapeutically target the egg’s supporting environment.”
One you’ve delivered that bouncing baby boy or girl, you now have a new challenge: carrying your precious bundle all over the place. All that lifting and carrying can put a lot of stress on your back. New moms need to learn how to reduce their risk of pain and injury when lifting and carrying their babies, says Sabrina M. Strickland, M.D., an orthopedic surgeon and a spokeswoman for the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.
“Initially, mothers may start off lifting their child of seven to 10 pounds numerous times per day. Slowly, the weight load increases, and if the proper lifting techniques aren’t used, this can lead to back strain,” she said.
Once you’re cleared to do so by your doctor, you should begin exercising to restore muscle tone to your abdomen and back, Dr. Strickland said. During the baby’s naptime, try to spend 10 minutes a day on the floor doing strengthening and stretching routines to help restore hip and back flexibility and strength.
She offers both moms and dads these tips to prevent back pain and injury:
• Don’t lift your baby with outstretched arms. Instead, bring the baby close to your chest and then lift. Do not twist your body. When picking up a child from the floor, bend at your knees, not at your waist. Squat down, tighten your stomach muscles and lift with your legs.
• Remove the tray when putting a baby in or taking a baby out of a high chair. When lifting a baby out of a crib, bring the baby close to you while slightly bending your knees.
• Use a “front pack” to carry your baby when walking. Try not to carry your child on your hip, because it overloads the back muscles. If you must do so, alternate sides.
• Prevent upper back pain while nursing by bringing the baby to your breast, rather than bending over the baby. While nursing, use a pillow or specially designed nursing pillow to elevate the baby.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a very common hormonal disorder in women, a leading cause of infertility and one of the most under-diagnosed diseases in the United States. Those are some of the reasons why September has been designated PCOS Awareness Month.
PCOS is characterized by seemingly unrelated symptoms and may include irregular or absent periods, lack of ovulation, weight gain, acne, excessive facial hair and infertility. Surprisingly, most women with PCOS do not even know they have it until they begin trying to conceive and seek help in getting pregnant.
Resolve: the National Infertility Association has posted more information about PCOS on its website. And we have done the same on ours. Learn more about PCOS and spread the word among your friends and family.
High blood pressure during pregnancy, known as preeclampsia, subsides after the baby is born. But new research finds that women with high blood pressure during pregnancy are more likely to develop it again later in life.
In addition, brothers and sisters of these women have a higher risk of high blood pressure later in life, and brothers also may have a higher chance of heart disease. “The increased risk of high blood pressure in siblings suggests that family history contributes to the increased risk of high blood pressure in women during pregnancy,” said study co-leader Tracey Weissgerber of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.
“However, women who had high blood pressure in pregnancy were still more likely to develop high blood pressure later in life than their sisters who had normal blood pressure in pregnancy,” she added.
The study, published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, looked at data from more than 900 brothers and nearly 1,500 sisters in 954 sibling groups across the United States. Compared with women who had normal blood pressure during pregnancy, women with high blood pressure during pregnancy were 75 percent more likely to develop high blood pressure later in life.
“Further studies are needed to determine whether this increased risk in women who had high blood pressure in pregnancy is due to stronger genetic predisposition to high blood pressure, other risk factors, or lasting damage caused by high blood pressure in pregnancy,” Weissgerber said.
“My husband and I were so impressed with the care we received at Dr. Ziegler’s office. The staff was supportive, caring and honest. We beat the odds and were successful with our first IVF. I highly recommend this practice. We’re forever grateful to them.”
That was the review posted on the website Reputation.com, and we couldn’t be happier. Thank you to this anonymous patient, and to all who have shared their feelings on Reputation.com.
You can read these reviews on our site as well. We hope you will share your feelings about us with others too.