Archive for the ‘ Pregnancy News ’ Category

What Really Causes Preeclampsia?

Friday, October 17th, 2014

Researchers behind a new study are suggesting a name change for the condition known as preeclampsia. Here’s why:

The condition, which affects pregnant women and can be deadly, may actually be caused by the fetus and not the placenta, according to an editorial in the journal Anaesthesia cited in Science Daily.

The co-author of the piece, associate professor Alicia Dennis, who is consultant anaesthetist and director of anaesthesia research at the Royal Women’s Hospital in Melbourne, Australia, says the condition may be a result of problems getting adequate oxygen to the developing fetus. So she suggests changing the name of the condition to hypertension caused by pregnancy might help women better understand it, and get the info they need to manage it.

Dennis and her co-author, Julian Castro, consultant cardiologist at St. Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne, suggest that pregnancy proceeds without incident when a mom-to-be can maintain a continued flow of oxygen to meet the needs of the fetus as it grows and changes. And when she can’t, that’s when the problems occur.

“Referring to it as hypertension caused by pregnancy, rather than the historically out-dated name of preeclampsia, would mean that women worldwide could be better informed and counseled about the condition,” she wrote, as cited in Science Day.

What do you think: Does this description of preeclampsia help you make sense of what causes it?
Related:
Are You at Risk of Preeclampsia?

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Swelling During Pregnancy: When to Worry
Swelling During Pregnancy: When to Worry
Swelling During Pregnancy: When to Worry

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Those Pregnancy Chocolate Cravings: Mental, or Physical?

Thursday, October 16th, 2014

Early in my pregnancy, I was casually strolling the aisles of Lowe’s Home Improvement with my husband. With the cash register impulse buys, I spied a packet of Red Vines. My reaction caught me off guard: I have never, ever wanted any single food item so badly. I needed it. It was a downright visceral, bodily urge.

And if you’ve ever experienced a pregnancy craving too, you know that it can feel about as physical a need as thirst in a desert. But are they? I was fascinated to read in New York magazine that new research suggests pregnancy cravings may be indeed be mental.

The study, published in Frontiers in Psychology, focused on chocolate. Instead of craving chocolate, say, as a biological response to needing more calories to support a growing fetus, or as a result of fluctuating hormones, or out of a desire for caffeine during a period of flagging energy — the research showed that women may be drawn to chocolate during the one time in her life it’s “socially acceptable” to indulge in such consumption.

The study found that during pregnancy, “women take on a more functional view of their body, which legitimizes divergence from cultural ideals of thinness and restraint.” Few women, according to the research, even report efforts to battle their cravings.

Apparently, we figure if we’re ever going to settle in for some Netflix binge-watching with a spoon in a bucket of rocky road—pregnancy’s the time.

But let’s hear from the mamas out there: Do you buy the idea that your pregnancy cravings are all in your head?

Are you interested in healthy pregnancy meal plans? Take this quick survey and let us know what you want!

Pregnant? Sign up for our pregnancy newsletters to give you the inside scoop, every step of the way. And don’t forget to like Everything Pregnancy to keep up with the very latest in pregnancy news.

How to Eat Healthy During Pregnancy:Decoding Pregnancy Cravings
How to Eat Healthy During Pregnancy:Decoding Pregnancy Cravings
How to Eat Healthy During Pregnancy:Decoding Pregnancy Cravings

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When Is the Right Time to Get an Epidural?

Thursday, October 9th, 2014

If you’ve ever requested an epidural in childbirth, you know that you want that pain relief just as soon as you ask for it. And new research suggests that, indeed, the very moment you ask is exactly the appropriate time to get it.

A review published in the Cochrane Library looked at the effects of epidurals given early in labor versus late, and found they were very comparable.

Researchers reviewed data from nine studies, for a total of close to 16,000 first-time mothers, who were randomly selected to receive their epidurals early or late in labor. The data showed that the administration of earlier epidurals had no impact on the chances of deliveries requiring the use of forceps or suction, or to the amount of time moms spent pushing.

Some previous studies have suggested that the timing of an epidural can play a role in prolonging labor, as well as up the chances the mom-to-be could end up with a c-section delivery.

On the contrary, the study’s head researcher Dr. Ban Leong Sng wrote, “The right time to give the epidural is when the woman requests pain relief. If they request an epidural early during their labor, the evidence we have does not provide a compelling reason why this should be refused.”

Did you opt for an epidural, and did it affect your delivery outcome?

Pregnant? Sign up for our pregnancy newsletters to give you the inside scoop, every step of the way. Plus, don’t forget to like Everything Pregnancy to keep up with the very latest in pregnancy news.

Labor & Delivery: Epidurals
Labor & Delivery: Epidurals
Labor & Delivery: Epidurals

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Why the Flu Hits Pregnant Women Harder

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014

Getting a flu shot was a must on my pregnancy to-do list because I knew it could protect my babies—and my ob-gyn emphasized its importance to boot.

About half of pregnant women, like me, typically get the flu shot—but the category includes people who are some of the most vulnerable to actually coming down with influenza. If an expecting mom gets the flu, her symptoms are often much worse, and she runs a higher risk of premature delivery. That much has long been known.

But the real reason for why that is may have just been discovered: As Time reports, a new study out of Stanford University published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that certain cells collected from pregnant women reacted too strongly when attempting to fight off the infection.

That might sound like a positive thing, but the side effects of the overkill response can be damaging. For instance, too many cells in the lung trying to solve the problem can result in inflammation which makes it hard to breathe, according to the study.

It’s a surprising finding because it’s been commonly understood previously that flu hits pregnant women harder because their immune systems are compromised as a means of keeping the body from attacking the growing fetus.

The study’s authors, not surprisingly, said they urged all pregnant women to get those flu shots.

And they’re not the only ones, of course. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recently announced new guidelines that indicate the importance of a flu shot while pregnant. And the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases just held a press conference urging everyone older than six months of age to get a vaccine this flu season.

Will you?

If you’re expecting, sign up for our pregnancy newsletters to give you the inside scoop, every step of the way. And don’t forget to like Everything Pregnancy to keep up with the very latest in pregnancy news.

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This Is How Gwen Told Gavin She Was Pregnant…

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

Telling your mate that you’re pregnant is a really big deal—and lots of us like to do it up in style. But when Gwen Stefani discovered she was expecting her third child, baby Apollo, her method of sharing the news with hubby Gavin Rossdale was a little more unconventional.

As Us Weekly reports, in an appearance on Howard Stern’s radio show yesterday, Gavin spilled the beans on how Gwen told him. “I got this email on the road, from Gwen, and the title was in capitals, ‘LOOK WHAT YOU DID TO ME NOW.’ I was like, ‘What is this?’ My blood pressure went through the roof. And I opened the e-mail, and it was the pregnancy stick.’”

It wasn’t exactly the most romantic way to share the big news, but I’m thinking it’s kind of like how your oldest child gets the completely filled in baby book and thousands of pictures of every milestone along they way, while the second and third kids kind of get the short shaft. For instance, we made three photo books documenting my oldest daughter’s arrival, while there’s one slim volume for my youngest.

Tell us: How did you tell your mate that you were expecting? Did your announcements get a little less elaborate with each additional pregnancy?

Not sure if you’re expecting? Take our quiz to see if it’s time to get that pregnancy test. And don’t forget to like Everything Pregnancy on Facebook to keep up with the latest in pregnancy-related news.

Your Pregnancy: 5 Early Pregnancy Symptoms Most Women Deal With
Your Pregnancy: 5 Early Pregnancy Symptoms Most Women Deal With
Your Pregnancy: 5 Early Pregnancy Symptoms Most Women Deal With

Image: Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale, by DFree / Shutterstock.com

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