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June 2006 Briefing - Obstetrics/Gynecology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in OBGYN & Women's Health for June 2006. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Lack of Gene Abolishes Sexual Behavior in Female Mice

FRIDAY, June 30 (HealthDay News) -- Knocking out the estrogen receptor in a specific brain area of female mice abolishes their sexual behavior and leads to aggressive rejection of male advances, according to a report published online June 27 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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Panel Recommends Gardasil As Routine Adolescent Vaccine

THURSDAY, June 29 (HealthDay News) -- The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices has recommended that 11- and 12-year-old girls routinely receive Gardasil, the newly approved human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, to protect against cervical cancer. The vaccine can be administered to girls as young as age 9, at the provider's discretion, and for women up to age 26 who have not previously received an HPV vaccine.

More Information - Merck

Rheumatoid Remission in Pregnancy Linked to Fetal DNA

THURSDAY, June 29 (HealthDay News) -- Rising levels of fetal DNA in maternal serum may be responsible for the disease improvements known to occur during pregnancy among women with inflammatory arthritis, according to new research in the July issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism.

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Women's In-Hospital Survival Up for Heart Disease, Stroke

THURSDAY, June 29 (HealthDay News) -- Between 2002 and 2004, women's in-hospital survival rates for heart disease and stroke improved by an average of 9.54 percent, and the best-performing hospitals had a 40 percent lower mortality rate than the poorest-performing hospitals, according to the Third Annual Report on Women's Health Outcomes in U.S. Hospitals study published June 26 by HealthGrades.

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Chest X-Rays May Increase Risk of Breast Cancer

WEDNESDAY, June 28 (HealthDay News) -- Women with inherited mutations in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes may be at greater risk of developing breast cancer after exposure to chest X-rays compared with BRCA1/BRCA2 carriers who aren't exposed to X-rays, according to a report published online June 26 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Perineal Care Washcloths Recalled Due to Bacteria

TUESDAY, June 27 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Sage Products of Cary, Ill., have announced a recall of certain batches of Comfort Shield Perineal Care Washcloths due to contamination with Burkholderia cepacia.

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Coffee May Cut Diabetes Risk in Postmenopausal Women

MONDAY, June 26 (HealthDay News) -- In postmenopausal women, drinking coffee -- especially the decaffeinated brew -- is inversely associated with the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, according to a study in the June 26 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Hot Flashes Are Linked to Insomnia

MONDAY, June 26 (HealthDay News) -- In perimenopausal and postmenopausal women, hot flashes are strongly associated with insomnia, according to a study in the June 26 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Condom Use Reduces Risk of HPV in Young Women

WEDNESDAY, June 21 (HealthDay News) -- Newly sexually active young women whose male partners consistently use condoms during sex are at less risk of cervical and vulvovaginal infection with human papillomavirus (HPV), according to a study published in the June 22 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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High Urinary Cadmium Linked to Breast Cancer Risk

WEDNESDAY, June 21 (HealthDay News) -- Women with high levels of cadmium in their urine have more than twice the risk of developing breast cancer than women with the lowest levels, according to a study in the June 21 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Assisted Reproduction Up 28 Percent Between 1998-2000

TUESDAY, June 20 (HealthDay News) -- Assisted reproductive technology (ART) was used in nearly 108,000 documented births worldwide in 2000, a 28 percent increase since 1998, according to a report in the June issue of Fertility and Sterility.

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Radiation Helps Survival for Inflammatory Breast Cancer

TUESDAY, June 20 (HealthDay News) -- Although radiation therapy appears to improve survival for inflammatory breast cancer patients, only 42 percent survive five years, and the order of treatment does not seem to help, according to a report in the June issue of Archives of Surgery.

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One Methotrexate Dose Effective for Ectopic Pregnancies

MONDAY, June 19 (HealthDay News) -- One dose of methotrexate (MTX) is as effective as multiple doses to treat unruptured ectopic pregnancies, according to a study in the June issue of Fertility and Sterility.

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Gonadotropin Stimulation Ceiling Effect Demonstrated

MONDAY, June 19 (HealthDay News) -- In women who undergo in vitro fertilization (IVF), the odds of achieving a successful clinical pregnancy increase until age 30 (odds ratio 1.72 per year) and then begin a linear decline, according to a study published in the June issue of Fertility and Sterility.

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Letrozole for Infertility Appears Non-Teratogenic

MONDAY, June 19 (HealthDay News) -- Newborns whose mothers conceived after fertility treatment with letrozole or clomiphene citrate (CC) show no group differences in overall rates of major and minor congenital malformations, while cardiac anomaly may be more frequent in those whose mothers were treated with CC, according to a study in the June issue of Fertility and Sterility.

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Pregnancy Outcomes Worse in Diabetic Than Other Women

FRIDAY, June 16 (HealthDay News) -- Infants born to women with type 1 or type 2 diabetes have perinatal mortality rates and major congenital anomaly rates about four times and more than two times higher, respectively, than infants in the general population, according to a study published online June 16 in BMJ.

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Dramatic Rise Predicted for Hip Fractures

FRIDAY, June 16 (HealthDay News) -- The estimated number of hip fractures worldwide may increase from 1.7 million in 1990 to 6.3 million in 2050 if incidence rates remain stable, and may rise to 8.2 million if incidence rates increase by 1 percent per year, according to a report published in the June 17 issue of The Lancet.

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FDA Approves Hycamtin for Late-Stage Cervical Cancer

THURSDAY, June 15 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved Hycamtin (topotecan hydrochloride) as the treatment of choice to be used in combination with cisplatin for women with stage IVB cervical cancer who have recurrent or persistent cervical cancer with metastases who are unlikely to benefit from surgery or radiation.

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Surgery for Ulcerative Colitis Increases Risk of Infertility

THURSDAY, June 15 (HealthDay News) -- Women who are treated for ulcerative colitis with ileal pouch anal anastomosis (IPAA) have a threefold higher risk of infertility compared with women treated with drug therapy, according to a study published online June 13 in Gut.

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Feelings for Frozen Embryos Affect Disposal Choices

THURSDAY, June 15 (HealthDay News) -- Infertility patients' decisions about disposal of excess cryopreserved embryos are affected by feelings of responsibility to society and the embryos, with many patients feeling that the available disposal options are inadequate, according to a report in the June issue of Fertility and Sterility. Some patients expressed a wish to hold a disposal ceremony for the embryos rather than donate them for research or to other couples, or to thaw and discard them.

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HPV Test Has Similar Sensitivity As Pap Smear

THURSDAY, June 15 (HealthDay News) -- In women aged 35-60, human papillomavirus (HPV) testing alone is more sensitive than the conventional Pap smear for detecting cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grade 2 or higher, but it has a lower positive predictive value, according to a report in the June 7 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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FDA Targets Unclear Medical Abbreviations

THURSDAY, June 15 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) has launched a national health professional education campaign to eliminate a common but preventable cause of medication errors: unclear and potentially confusing abbreviations written by health care professionals and others.

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HIV-Positive Women Benefit from Supervised Exercise

WEDNESDAY, June 14 (HealthDay News) -- HIV-infected women who joined a 16-week, home-based program of exercise under supervision gained several benefits, notably improved strength, as well as better endurance, body composition and cardiorespiratory fitness, according to a study in the June issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Fluoxetine Does Not Help Anorexics Recover

TUESDAY, June 13 (HealthDay News) -- Fluoxetine does not help anorexia nervosa patients recover and maintain a healthy weight, according to a report in the June 14 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Meditation Shows Promise for Heart Disease Patients

TUESDAY, June 13 (HealthDay News) -- Transcendental meditation can improve blood pressure and insulin resistance components of the metabolic syndrome in patients with coronary heart disease (CHD), according to a report in the June 12 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Genomic Defects Found in Sperm as Men Age

MONDAY, June 12 (HealthDay News) -- As males age, the quality of their sperm declines as do their chances of achieving a pregnancy, according to a study published online June 9 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition. Aging in males is associated with a greater risk of having offspring with certain genetic conditions, but not others, such as Down syndrome. In addition, genetic defects cannot be inferred from conventional measures of semen quality.

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Repeat Prenatal Corticosteroids May Be Safe for Infants

FRIDAY, June 9 (HealthDay News) -- Repeat injections of corticosteroids as opposed to a single injection given to a woman at risk of preterm delivery can reduce an infant's risk of acute respiratory distress syndrome and seem to be safe, although more study is needed to determine the long-term impact on the child's neurological development, according to a report in the June 10 issue of The Lancet.

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FDA Approves Gardasil Cervical Cancer Vaccine

THURSDAY, June 8 (HealthDay News) -- For the first time, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a vaccine to reduce cervical cancer by preventing infection with human papillomavirus (HPV) types 6, 11, 16 and 18. Gardasil is manufactured by Merck & Co. and is approved for use in females aged 9 to 26.

More Information -- FDA

Overweight Lactating Women Can Cut Fat and Sugar Intake

THURSDAY, June 8 (HealthDay News) -- Overweight women who are breast-feeding can limit their fat and sugar consumption if they are careful to maintain their intake of calcium and vitamin D, according to a report in the June issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.

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Low Birth Weight Infants at Risk for Hyperactivity

THURSDAY, June 8 (HealthDay News) -- Children who are born prematurely or with a low birth weight are more likely to develop hyperkinetic disorder and have concentration problems than other children, according to a study published online June 5 in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.

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Estradiol Protects Mice from Developing Diabetes

THURSDAY, June 8 (HealthDay News) -- Both male and female mice that lack estradiol or estrogen receptors are prone to developing diabetes, possibly explaining the lower prevalence of diabetes in females, according to a study published online June 5 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition.

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Higher Risk of Complications with Repeat Caesareans

THURSDAY, June 8 (HealthDay News) -- A woman's risk of serious maternal morbidity -- including placenta accreta and hysterectomy -- rises with an increasing number of Caesarean deliveries, according to a report in the June issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

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Birth Defects Higher After ACE Inhibitor Use in 1st Trimester

WEDNESDAY, June 7 (HealthDay News) -- Women who take angiotensin-converting-enzyme (ACE) inhibitors during the first trimester of pregnancy have a greater risk of having an infant with major congenital malformations than women who do not take the antihypertensives, according to a report in the June 8 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Having Sex at Term Pregnancy Does Not Hasten Delivery

WEDNESDAY, June 7 (HealthDay News) -- Patients who have sexual intercourse at term pregnancy do not hasten the onset of labor, according to a report in the June issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

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Online Course Launched to Focus on Gender, Health Issues

WEDNESDAY, June 7 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration Office of Women's Health and the National Institutes of Health Office of Research on Women's Health have launched a new online course that is aimed at clinicians and highlights how illness and health outcomes differ between males and females.

More Information -- FDA
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More Basal-Like Breast Cancer Tumors in Young Black Women

TUESDAY, June 6 (HealthDay News) -- There is a higher prevalence of basal-like breast cancer tumors among premenopausal black women compared with their postmenopausal and non-black counterparts, according to the results of a study published in the June 7 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Nap Schedule May Reduce Fatigue in Medical Residents

TUESDAY, June 6 (HealthDay News) -- A protected nap schedule for medical residents covering overnight shifts only modestly increases sleep time but reduces reports of fatigue and sleepiness, according to a study in the June 6 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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High Temperatures Increase Risk of Death By a Third

TUESDAY, June 6 (HealthDay News) -- High temperatures can increase the overall risk of death by about a third, with the elderly, women, widows, widowers and those with certain medical conditions being most vulnerable, according to a study in the May issue of Epidemiology.

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Many Adolescent Girls Report Having Unwanted Sex

MONDAY, June 5 (HealthDay News) -- About 40 percent of adolescent girls report being pressured or threatened into having sex, according to a study in the June issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

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Female Cardiac Rehabilitation Patients Less Fit Than Men

MONDAY, June 5 (HealthDay News) -- Women entering a rehabilitation program who experienced a recent myocardial infarction or had bypass surgery are about as fit as patients with life-threatening chronic heart failure, according to a study published online June 5 in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

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Tamoxifen, Raloxifene Similar in Ability To Cut Cancer Risk

MONDAY, June 5 (HealthDay News) -- Tamoxifen and raloxifene are both effective in reducing the risk of invasive breast cancer, but each has its own risks and side effects, according to two studies from the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project Study of Tamoxifen and Raloxifene (STAR) trial published online June 5 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Lower Malpractice Costs in States with Damage Caps

MONDAY, June 5 (HealthDay News) -- In states that have enacted tort reform to cap total or non-economic medical malpractice payments, costs and premiums tend to be lower, according to a report in the May/June issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

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Folic Acid Supplementation Does Not Reduce Cleft Risk

FRIDAY, June 2 (HealthDay News) -- Folic acid supplements do not reduce the risk of cleft lip or cleft palate, but other nutrients may reduce the risk, according to a study in the May issue of Epidemiology. The finding runs counter to previous studies that suggested that folic acid may reduce cleft risk, the authors report.

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Child's Immunization Varies with Mother's Age, Education

FRIDAY, June 2 (HealthDay News) -- The mothers of infants with incomplete immunizations tend to belong to ethnic minority groups, be economically disadvantaged and have a large family, whereas mothers who choose not to immunize infants are more likely to be aged 40 or above, to be educated to university level or be of black Caribbean ethnicity, according to a British study published in the June 3 issue of BMJ.

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Female Genital Mutilation Leads to More Infant Deaths

FRIDAY, June 2 (HealthDay News) -- Female genital mutilation in African women increases the risk of obstetric complications such as Caesarean section, postpartum hemorrhage and infant death, according to a study in the June 3 issue of The Lancet.

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Single-Embryo Transfers Successful in Women Over 35

THURSDAY, June 1 (HealthDay News) -- Elective single-embryo transfer may be as likely to result in pregnancy and a live birth in women aged 36 to 39 undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF) as it is in younger women, according to a study published June 1 in Human Reproduction.

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Patient-Choice C-Section May Ultimately Restrict Options

THURSDAY, June 1 (HealthDay News) -- Increasing advocacy for patient-choice Caesarean delivery may create an environment that makes it difficult for women to choose vaginal delivery, particularly if they have had a previous Caesarean delivery or present with a breech fetus, according to an essay published in the May/June issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

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Reduced Activity Over Time Hikes Women's Obesity Risk

THURSDAY, June 1 (HealthDay News) -- Women who become less physically active from youth to adulthood are at greater risk of becoming overweight or obese, in contrast to men, according to a study in the May issue of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise.

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Behavioral Weight-Loss Program Effective

THURSDAY, June 1 (HealthDay News) -- A behavioral weight-loss program that addresses physical activity self-efficacy, behavioral strategies and barriers to weight management can be effective in overweight sedentary women, according to a study in the May issue of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise.

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