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Results for search "Women's Problems: Misc.".

Health News Results - 445

THURSDAY, Dec. 13, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Women juggling a medical career and motherhood often face significant workplace discrimination, a new study finds.

Researchers conducted an online survey of U.S. doctors who were mothers. The age range was 24 to 62, and most worked more than 40 hours a week.

Common complaints included less chance of career development; financial pe...

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 12, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The toll of U.S. military service can be steep for female veterans, with depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and brain injury each significantly raising the odds of later dementia, new research suggests.

The study, of more than 100,000 older women veterans, spotlights the risk factors stemming from military service that can lead to t...

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 12, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Women who stick to a Mediterranean diet have a 25 percent lower risk of heart disease -- and researchers say they're starting to understand why.

"Our study has a strong public health message that modest changes in known cardiovascular disease risk factors, particularly those relating to inflammation, glucose metabolism and insulin resistanc...

TUESDAY, Dec. 11, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Women often delay calling for emergency help when heart attack symptoms start, a new study finds.

Researchers in Switzerland found that women suffering a heart attack typically waited 37 minutes longer than men before calling an ambulance. And those delays showed no signs of improving over the 16-year study period.

One reason may be...

TUESDAY, Dec. 11, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- You might be surprised to learn that stroke is the number three killer of women.

Women and men have many of the same risk factors for stroke, but some -- like high blood pressure, migraine with aura, diabetes and stress -- tend to be stronger or more common in women.

Your risk is also influenced by hormones, reproductive health and ...

FRIDAY, Dec. 7, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Hot flashes, a common curse in menopause, can be especially bothersome after breast cancer. But a new study suggests an existing medication may help.

The drug is oxybutynin (Ditropan XL), long used to treat urinary incontinence.

The study found that women taking the medicine had an average of five fewer hot flashes a week, compared w...

FRIDAY, Dec. 7, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- There's more evidence that when a survivor of early stage breast cancer takes up healthy eating and regular exercise, the odds of the disease returning go down.

The key is sticking with such programs, said study lead author Dr. Wolfgang Janni.

Healthier lifestyles "might improve the prognosis of breast cancer patients if adherence is ...

THURSDAY, Dec. 6, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Tamoxifen is considered a vital weapon in the fight against breast cancer, but many women who have to take the drug struggle with its significant side effects.

Now, new research shows that a lower dose of the hormone therapy helped prevent breast cancer from returning and guarded against new cancers in women who had high-risk breast tissue.

THURSDAY, Dec. 6, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- For many breast cancer patients, removal of lymph nodes in the armpit area is a common procedure, due to worries that the tumor has spread to these tissues.

But the operation can also bring the difficult long-term side effect of lymphedema, a painful arm swelling.

Now, new Dutch research suggests that for early stage breast cancer p...

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 5, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- For certain women with early stage breast cancer, a newer drug that combines an antibody with chemotherapy may cut the risk of disease recurrence in half, a new trial finds.

The study focused on nearly 1,500 women with early stage breast cancer that was HER2-positive -- meaning it carries a protein that promotes cancer growth.

Abou...

TUESDAY, Dec. 4, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The world's first baby born to a woman who had a uterus transplant from a deceased donor shows that such transplants can be successful, Brazilian doctors say.

The 6-pound baby girl was delivered by C-section to an unidentified young woman who had been born without a uterus.

The birth shows that pregnancies involving a uterus from a ...

TUESDAY, Dec. 4, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Ever since the Affordable Care Act expanded Medicaid in some states, more women have received health care before pregnancy, a new study finds.

The number of women who had Medicaid in the month before pregnancy rose from 31 percent to 36 percent in states that opted out of Medicaid expansion, but increased from 43 percent to 57 percent in state...

FRIDAY, Nov. 30, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Emotional abuse may add to the woes of menopause, a new study suggests.

Researchers found that women who are emotionally tormented by a spouse or partner may suffer from more night sweats, painful sex and hot flashes when their periods stop.

"The data show that experience of domestic violence and emotional abuse, sexual assault and...

FRIDAY, Nov. 30, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Women who live a healthy lifestyle during the transition to menopause may help keep their blood vessels healthy as they age, a new study suggests.

Compared with women who had the least healthy lifestyle, those who led the healthiest lifestyle had less thickening and buildup of fatty plaque in their arteries, researchers found.

"Midl...

THURSDAY, Nov. 29, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The hearts of women who snore appear to become damaged more quickly than those of men who "saw lumber" at night, a new study suggests.

Evaluating nearly 4,500 British adults who underwent cardiac imaging, researchers also learned that obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) may be vastly underdiagnosed among snorers.

This finding surprised s...

TUESDAY, Nov. 20, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- As the U.S. opioid epidemic rages unchecked, new research shows that pregnancy-related deaths due to opioid misuse more than doubled between 2007 and 2016.

Deaths during or soon after pregnancy rose 34 percent during that time, and the percentage involving heroin, fentanyl or prescription painkillers (such as OxyCo...

TUESDAY, Nov. 20, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Women are no more likely than men to have health problems due to strenuous training and extreme physical exertion, researchers report.

"Our findings contain some potentially myth-busting data on the impact of extreme physical activity on women. We have shown that with appropriate training and preparation, many of t...

TUESDAY, Nov. 13, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Kids who were born large and whose mothers developed a form of diabetes during pregnancy have nearly triple the odds of becoming overweight or obese in childhood, new research shows.

"Just like smoking, alcohol consumption and other lifestyle choices, [women's] weight prior to getting pregnant, and weight gain and blood sugar control during p...

MONDAY, Nov. 12, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Few American mothers learn from their health care providers that breastfeeding can reduce the risk of breast cancer, a new study finds.

Researchers surveyed more than 700 mothers. Of the 92 percent who said they'd breastfed, 56 percent said they knew that breastfeeding reduced breast cancer risk before they made the decision to nurse.

<...

MONDAY, Nov. 12, 2018 (American Heart Association) -- Heart attacks once characterized as a part of "old man's disease" -- are increasingly occurring in younger people, especially women, according to new research.

The study, presented Sunday at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions meeting in Chicago and published in the AHA journal Circulation, sought to inve...

MONDAY, Nov. 12, 2018 (American Heart Association) -- With the release of new guidelines for treating and managing cholesterol, there may be questions not only about the changes in the update, but about cholesterol itself.

Most people know that high cholesterol is bad. But there's a bigger picture involved when determining what's considered too high. Put another way, the same number ...

FRIDAY, Nov. 9, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Women confused by the conflicting advice surrounding the benefits and timing of mammograms will be interested in a new study out of Sweden.

The research, involving more than 50,000 breast cancer patients, found that those who took part in a breast cancer screening program had a 60 percent lower risk of dying from the disease in the 10 years aft...

THURSDAY, Nov. 8, 2018 (American Heart Association) -- Heart attacks in pregnant women are rare, but the number is rising, particularly among older expectant mothers, according to a new study that looked at the most common factors behind the increase.

The number of women who had heart attacks during or after pregnancy rose 19 percent from 2005 to 2014, the study found.

"We...

THURSDAY, Nov. 8, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Smoking, diabetes, high blood pressure: all bad for the heart, but perhaps worse for women's hearts than men's, new research shows.

Looking at data on 472,000 Britons ages 40 to 69, researchers found that all three of these heart disease risk factors increased the odds of heart attack for both sexes.

But the rise in risk went even h...

TUESDAY, Nov. 6, 2018 (American Heart Association) -- Traditional risk factors like obesity, high blood pressure and a sedentary lifestyle may not be the only predictors of type 2 diabetes. New research points to the role that stress may play in the development of the condition in women.

The study, being presented Nov. 10 at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions confer...

MONDAY, Nov. 5, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Over the past two decades, the percentage of U.S. women who say they've smoked or drank during a pregnancy has fallen, but the percentage who say they've used marijuana has nearly doubled, a new report finds.

Between 2002 and 2016, the percentage of pregnant women ages 18 to 44 who said they used pot rose from 2.85 percent to nearly 5 percent, ...

MONDAY, Nov. 5, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Some bystanders may avoid performing CPR on women because they fear hurting them, or even being accused of sexual assault, preliminary research suggests.

In two new studies, researchers tried to dig deeper into a puzzling pattern that has been seen in past research: Women are less likely than men to receive bystander CPR if they go into cardiac...

MONDAY, Nov. 5, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Melanoma skin cancer death rates in men are on the rise in most countries, but are stable or declining for women in some, according to a new study.

Researchers analyzed World Health Organization data from 33 countries between 1985 and 2015. Melanoma death rates in men were increasing in all but one nation.

In all 33 countries, melanom...

FRIDAY, Nov. 2, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Trying to avoid "panic parenting" is the reason why many single women freeze their eggs for non-medical reasons, a small new study suggests.

Panic parenting refers to having a relationship just to have a baby.

"Whilst the number of women freezing their eggs remains small, many more are now considering this option as a way of extending...

FRIDAY, Nov. 2, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Testing for human papillomavirus (HPV) has become the standard of care in screening for cervical cancer. But now, Canadian researchers say it may become unnecessary in women aged 55 or older who have one negative result with the test.

The DNA-based HPV test is highly accurate in detecting 14 high-risk strains of the virus that causes the majori...

THURSDAY, Nov. 1, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly half of older American women have urinary incontinence, but many have not talked to a doctor about it, a new national poll shows.

More than 1,000 women, aged 50 to 80, were asked questions about their bladder control. The poll found that 43 percent of those in their 50s and 60s had urinary incontinence. That percentage jumped to 51 per...

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 31, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Surgeons have long turned to a minimally invasive means of hysterectomy when treating early stage cervical cancer.

However, two new studies could change all that. Both found the approach was linked to a higher rate of cancer recurrence, plus worse long-term survival, compared to more "open" surgeries.

"Minimally invasive surgery...

FRIDAY, Oct. 12, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The number of women delivering babies via cesarean section has nearly doubled worldwide since 2000, to about 21 percent, new research shows.

That's significantly higher than the 10 percent to 15 percent considered medically necessary, researchers said.

When complications develop, C-sections can save the lives of mothers and their b...

THURSDAY, Oct. 11, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The flu shot reduces a pregnant woman's risk of hospitalization for flu by 40 percent, new research shows.

"Expecting mothers face a number of threats to their health and the health of their baby during pregnancy, and getting the flu is one of them," said study co-author Allison Naleway, of Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research, in Po...

THURSDAY, Oct. 11, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- While rates of colon cancer have declined among people 50 and older, they're on the rise for younger Americans. Now, new research suggests widening waistlines may be one reason why.

In the study, women aged 20 to 49 who were overweight or obese had up to twice the risk for colon cancer before age 50, compared with normal-weight women.

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WEDNESDAY, Oct. 10, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Black women have the highest risk of life-threatening birth complications in the United States, a new study finds.

Compared to whites, black women had a 70 percent higher rate of major birth problems, the University of Michigan researchers reported.

"Celebrities like Serena Williams who have shared their birth-related emergency ...

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 10, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- If you're overweight and thinking of starting a family, there's compelling evidence that you should lose the excess pounds before you get pregnant.

For starters, some health conditions associated with being overweight, like polycystic ovary syndrome (or PCOS), can make it harder for you to conceive.

Once you get pregnant, being ov...

TUESDAY, Oct. 9, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Expectant moms will want to read this.

Pushing sooner during childbirth is just as safe for most women and babies as pushing later, researchers report.

The best time to start pushing during labor has been a matter of debate. Many U.S. hospitals recommend delaying pushing, but evidence has been inconclusive.

This new study...

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 3, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Decades-old allegations of sexual assault have consumed the nation for the past two weeks, as the Senate, the FBI and the public wrestle with what it all may mean for both the U.S. Supreme Court and American society at large in the age of #MeToo.

The high-stakes debate is still unfolding. But now comes a new study that warns that sexual ...

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 3, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Tough pregnancies might translate into tough times during menopause, new research suggests.

Women who developed complications during pregnancy -- including dangerously high blood pressure ("preeclampsia") and gestational diabetes -- were more likely to experience more hot flashes during menopause, the researchers found.

"This study...

MONDAY, Oct. 1, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Women plagued by recurrent urinary tract infections (UTIs) may look no farther than their kitchen tap for relief, a new study suggests.

Researchers found that women who drank plenty of water had a significant reduction in their odds for a recurrence of the common infections.

"This study provides convincing evidence that increased dail...

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 26, 2018 (HealthDay -- News) -- There's long been a connection between birth control pills and a reduced risk of ovarian cancer. Now, new research suggests that's true for the latest form of the drug, as well.

Scientists say the protective effect of the newer pills -- which contain lower doses of estrogens and different progestogens -- rose...

TUESDAY, Sept. 25, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Black women are more likely than white women to skip important hormonal breast cancer treatments, new research indicates.

Endocrine therapy is used to add, block or get rid of naturally occurring hormones like estrogen and progesterone that trigger certain types of breast cancer, the study authors explained. Previous studies have shown that ...

TUESDAY, Sept. 25, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Heather Kinion never spent much time thinking about her weight. But when she got pregnant, that changed.

"My sister had a baby a few years before me and had gained a bunch of weight, and she still hadn't lost it when I got pregnant," Kinion said. So the Chicago-area mom-to-be was happy to sign up for a nutritional counseling program her doc...

TUESDAY, Sept. 25, 2018 (American Heart Association) -- More people are stepping in to help give CPR when someone's heart stops, and first responders are intervening at higher levels -- but survival rates are higher for men who have cardiac arrests than for women, a recent study suggests.

Based on data for 8,100 people in 16 North Carolina counties from 2010 to 2014, researchers meas...

THURSDAY, Sept. 20, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The Mediterranean diet may do more than help you reach and maintain a healthy weight: New research suggests that women who follow it also lower their stroke risk.

But men did not reap the same benefit from the diet, which concentrates on fish, fruits, nuts, vegetables and beans, and avoids meat and dairy products.

"Simple change...

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 19, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The early symptoms of ovarian cancer are often confused with less serious issues, making successful treatment less likely, a cancer expert warns.

Ovarian cancer is called a "silent killer." That's because many women are diagnosed too late, said Dr. David Fishman of NewYork-Presbyterian Queens Hospital in New York City.

"Ovarian ...

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 19, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- More American women than ever are having twins, triplets, quadruplets and even quintuplets, and it's not just because some are using fertility treatments, new research shows.

Since the 1980s, the number of multiple births has jumped from roughly 20 sets per 1,000 live births to almost 35 sets per 1,000 live births, the study found.

...

MONDAY, Sept. 17, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- New research suggests there is no perfume a man loves more than the scent of a fertile woman.

Researchers in Switzerland determined that women who are the "fittest" for reproduction have a distinctive scent that makes them particularly appealing to men.

"Women with high estrogen and low progesterone levels are most attractive to men...

TUESDAY, Sept. 11, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Sexual assault leaves many women with permanent indelible memories, a new study finds.

Compared with other traumatic life-altering events, the memories of sexual assault remain intense and vivid for years, even when not linked to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the study authors said.

"To some extent, it is not surprising...

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Wellness Library Results - 210

Soon into your pregnancy, don't be surprised if you feel foggy-brained and forgetful. You may find yourself misplacing your purse, forgetting to return phone calls, or going off to fetch something only to discover you've forgotten what you are looking for. At work, you may catch yourself daydreaming through meetings or staring out the window rather than completing that report. Whatever form your a...

Even though every delivery is different, each woman's labor usually comes with predictable stages that you can read about in any reliable pregnancy book. It's after the baby's born that many women are surprised by how they feel. After you've delivered your baby, you'll have some residual aches and pains -- perhaps some that your friends and relatives might not have talked about. Here's what you ca...

You're likely to hear it more than once during your pregnancy: "Go ahead, have a drink -- one little glass of wine won't hurt the baby." Older friends and relatives will insist that in their day, casual drinking was common during pregnancy. "And look at us," they'll add cheerfully. "We all turned out just fine." Are these well-meaning friends right? The answer is a resounding no. It may help you t...

Every mom-to-be hopes to give birth to a healthy baby. However, some women, due to age or genetic makeup, are at greater risk of having a baby with a birth defect. Amniocentesis -- or amnio for short -- is a prenatal diagnostic test that uses a sample of the amniotic fluid that surrounds your baby in the womb to test for specific abnormalities. Amnio can help rule out many potential problems, incl...

It takes strong building materials to make a healthy baby, and few things are stronger than iron. Iron forms the core of red blood cells, the vehicles that carry oxygen to every part of your body, including to your growing baby. If you don't have enough iron -- a common problem in pregnancy -- these vehicles will start to break down, leaving you and your baby deprived of oxygen. This condition, c...

Now that you're pregnant and eating for two, you probably wonder a bit about your diet and whether you're getting the nutrients you need. And if you suffer occasional bouts of nausea or morning sickness, your diet is even more of a concern. Here are some of the most common questions about nutritional needs during pregnancy. How much weight should I gain during pregnancy? Every woman is different...

The bond between parents and babies is one of the strongest forces in nature. Romances come and go, but once you've fallen for your baby, you're hooked for life. Jen Harrington of South Riding, Virginia, felt the rush the instant she looked at her new son. People had warned her that she was about to fall in love as never before, but she didn't know what they meant until Joshua came along. "It was ...

With his 2-year-old upstairs taking a nap, Tim Anderson* seized the chance to do some yard work. A few moments later, he was bewildered to find the toddler lying on the lawn, crying inconsolably. That's odd, he thought: How did he get downstairs so fast? Then, to his horror, he noticed a window screen lying beside his son. Alone in his room, the enterprising tot had managed to push out the screen ...

As the Girl Scouts motto goes: Be prepared. The better supplied you are before your baby gets here, the smoother your transition to parenthood will be. What follows is a handy checklist so you can make sure you've got the right stuff in time for your new arrival. Infant car seat You won't be able to leave the hospital without an infant car seat. In fact, if you don't have one, the hospital may loa...

It's a tough call, but no one would dispute that back pain ranks in the Top 10 list of a pregnant woman's gripes. According to the North American Spine Society, at least half of all women experience back pain at some point in pregnancy. An aching back is usually caused by your shifting center of gravity. The weight of your baby puts strain on your lower back, but it also may simply be the result ...

Bed rest. On the face of it, it sounds so relaxing, almost like a vacation. Lie in bed or on the couch ... read or watch television ... take a little break from "real" life. But these are two words that no pregnant woman wants to hear -- whether the doctor's order comes at 16, 26, or 36 weeks of pregnancy. The need for bed rest is surprisingly common during pregnancy. Roughly one in five women spe...

If you're having a normal, healthy pregnancy, you may want to add some low-intensity strength training and daily exercise to your regimen. Pregnancy isn't the time to take up new or strenuous sports, but with your health provider's okay, you can begin strengthening the muscles in your upper and lower body -- you're going to need them! During pregnancy, the extra weight in your belly and your brea...

Most women go through a battery of prenatal tests during the course of their pregnancy. But if you have diabetes, high blood pressure, or too much or too little of the fluid that bathes the fetus and serves as a shock absorber (known as amniotic fluid), extra monitoring is called for. If you have preeclampsia, a potentially serious condition marked by high blood pressure and excess protein in your...

Not too long ago, pregnant women didn't have many options when it came to choosing a place to give birth. It was just assumed that they would end up at the nearest hospital, whether they felt comfortable there or not. But today's moms-to-be have more possibilities than ever. They can find a hospital with the doctors and services that they prefer, they can opt to have a baby at home with the help...

Before you reach your third trimester, you should be thinking about registering for a childbirth education class. Like most prospective parents, you're probably apprehensive about labor, delivery, and your first days with your new baby. The courses are an excellent way to prepare yourself and your partner for childbirth -- psychologically, emotionally, and practically. If you possibly can, attend...

A birth plan is simply a document that outlines the kind of birth experience you wish to have. Creating one will help you talk with your physician or midwife about your baby's birth. Perhaps some of your requests can't be granted due to hospital policy, but at least you can start the discussion with hospital staff and see if your physician can work out some compromises. There are three important...

Light bleeding or "spotting" during pregnancy happens more often than you might think, with up to 25 percent of all pregnant women experiencing it. Spotting -- bleeding that isn't continuous and isn't enough to fill a tampon or pad -- is especially common in the first three months. In many cases there's no cause for alarm, but you should call your doctor whenever you have bleeding during pregnancy...

Early in your pregnancy, usually at your first prenatal visit, your practitioner will do certain standard blood tests to learn basic information about your body, check for specific conditions, or spot any potential health problems. Here's what your blood test may reveal: Blood type and antibody screen First of all, a blood test will disclose your blood type if you don't know it already. Each of th...

It's one of the first things that everyone asks a pregnant woman: Is it a boy or a girl? Throughout history, many parents didn't want to wait until the actual birth to find out. They'd wave crystals over the mother or consult the stars. They'd hang a ring over the mother's tummy or measure the baby's heart rate -- and have at least a 50/50 chance of guessing correctly. Now, of course, there are mu...

Expectant parents can be forgiven if they panic when they hear the word "bonding." Library shelves and Web sites are devoted to the importance of bonding with a newborn and the trauma that may result when it doesn't take place. Many parents now fear that if they don't bond immediately, their children may be scarred for life. No wonder the issue has wrought so much stress. Studies in the last two d...

Now that you're pregnant, you've probably noticed that health professionals have taken a sudden, intense interest in your blood pressure. You can hardly drive past the clinic without somebody flagging you down for a quick checkup. You might get tired of having that cuff wrapped around your arm, but all of those blood pressure measurements are completely necessary. Your blood pressure is one of the...

How does breastfeeding help me? No food is more perfect for babies than breast milk. Breast milk contains all the nutrients that a newborn needs -- to date some 100 "ingredients" have been identified in breast milk that cannot be duplicated in formula. In fact, the benefits of breastfeeding are so well established that the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) now recommends that women breastfeed t...

Everyone thinks that breastfeeding comes naturally. But for infants born prematurely or who are ill at birth, that often isn't the case. Some babies, even healthy ones, just plain struggle with the mechanics of suckling, becoming more frantic by the hour as their anxious moms try desperately to feed them. That's why it's good to learn as much about breastfeeding as you can before the baby gets her...

Breast milk is the perfect food for babies. It contains all the nutrients your baby needs in just the right balance, and it passes along the natural antibodies you've acquired, too, so your little one's immune system gets off to a good start. But it can also contain some unwelcome added ingredients if you're taking medicine for a cold or other ailment. Usually these medicines aren't passed along ...

As the tiny individual inside you grows, your body's organs are going to find the neighborhood increasingly more crowded. Your lungs and diaphragm will need to make room for this new resident, and as a result, you may feel a little out of breath -- usually starting in your second trimester. This breathless feeling will increase until your baby drops lower into your pelvis a few weeks before birth....

Babies have two basic options at birth: They can come out the hard way, or the really, really hard way. Ninety-seven percent of babies enter the birth canal headfirst, the safest approach for both mother and baby. The other 3 percent enter feet-first, bottom-first, or a combination of both. This is called a breech presentation. There are three different types of breech presentations. Some breech b...

I've heard drinking coffee can make it harder to get pregnant. Is that true? You may have heard that even moderate amounts of caffeine can delay conception. The truth is, no one is really sure. One often-cited study from the 1990s found that women who had the equivalent of three cups of coffee a day lowered their likelihood of conceiving by as much as 27 percent. But researchers at Harvard Medica...

What is a contraction stress test? In this procedure, your baby's heart rate is measured in response to the uterus when it contracts. These contractions are mild and induced. Every contraction you have squeezes the baby and gives the doctors a chance to see how he or she will stand up to the physical challenges involved in labor. As stressful as that may sound, for most babies the test presents no...

I've been feeling cramps in my abdomen. Is this normal? Pregnancy puts a major strain on your body, and nowhere is this more evident than in your expanding belly. As your baby grows, the added pressure on muscles, joints, ligaments, and surrounding organs can lead to cramping and discomfort. Knowing when and why cramps are likely to occur can help you recognize which ones are a normal part of preg...

Why am I losing my hair? Anybody with hair on their head will lose a bit every day. A woman with healthy hair could easily lose 150 hairs a day. Normally, other hairs grow back to take their place. But if you're noticing that your hair is getting thinner, you're losing hair faster than you're replacing it. Just like men, many women have inherited a tendency toward thinning hair as they grow older...

What's a Pap test? A Pap test -- named for its inventor, George Papanicolaou -- is a medical test that can detect a potential case of cervical cancer before it even starts. The test is undoubtedly a life saver. By some estimates, widespread use of the Pap test has cut cervical cancer deaths by 70 percent. What happens during a Pap test? The test is very simple. You will lie back on a table with y...

Josh Kraft and his wife originally planned to have their first baby in a hospital. But as the months went by, the idea seemed less and less appealing. "My wife wanted to control things," Kraft says. "She didn't want a doctor saying, 'Well, it's 5:30 on a Friday, let's move this thing along.'" Eventually, they decided to have the baby at home, where they could be in charge -- at least until the bab...

If you find that you're not immediately overwhelmed with love with your newborn, don't worry. Like any other emotional relationship, developing a connection with your child can take time. Similarly, as with any other relationship, this one will have its own unique rhythms and pace of development. The timing will depend upon you and your baby; your experience of childbirth and your life circumstanc...

During 42 hours of painful labor, Julie McNitt of Amherst, New York, had two constant companions: Her husband and a professional labor assistant called a "doula." And if she ever has another child, both of them will be invited back. Her husband earned points by sticking around despite a bad case of "deer in the headlights" syndrome. Her doula, Cindy Whittaker, simply helped her survive. "Because ...

Pregnancy is a time of many changes not only for your body, but also for your mind. Your mood can swing from sunny to dark, and you'll probably start worrying more than usual. And no matter how much you're looking forward to your baby's arrival, you just might find yourself feeling depressed. By some estimates, depression strikes one in five women during pregnancy. If you're feeling down during ...

Those colored lines on home tests aren't the only signs of early pregnancy. Many women start noticing changes in their bodies very soon after they conceive. If pregnancy is a possibility for you, you should watch out for the early symptoms. The sooner you realize you might be pregnant, the sooner you can take a pregnancy test to make sure. Keep in mind, however, that your body's early pregnancy w...

It doesn't just happen in the movies: Sometimes babies really are born in taxis or on trains -- even in the hospital parking lot. Rapid labor is most common in women who have given birth quickly in the past, have given birth several times before, or have previously gone into labor prematurely. But you never know when you may be called upon to assist in an emergency birth. The first rule of thumb? ...

Putting on extra weight isn't usually a winning strategy for good health. But now that you're pregnant, you need to keep the needle on your scale moving in the right direction. No matter what type of body you have now, it needs to get bigger. How much weight should I gain? According to the March of Dimes, a woman who started pregnancy at a normal weight should expect to gain about 25 to 35 pound...

What is an episiotomy? An episiotomy is a surgical cut to widen the vaginal opening during delivery. Doctors sometimes make an incision in the perineum -- the area between the vagina and the anus -- to help the baby come out. Your doctor will likely numb the area with a local anesthetic before making the cut and suture the incision after the baby is born. When is an episiotomy necessary? T...

There are a dozen good reasons to exercise during pregnancy. Lowering your risk of developing gestational diabetes and high blood pressure, and keeping your body fit so you can endure the challenges of labor and childbirth are just two of them. Still, you do have some special considerations, and you should discuss your exercise regimen with your health-care provider. Here are some issues to consi...

What are Braxton-Hicks contractions? Known as false labor, Braxton-Hicks contractions may be the first contractions you feel during pregnancy. They can start anywhere from the 20th week on. If you put a hand on your abdomen during a contraction, you can sometimes feel your abdominal muscles tighten and release, becoming hard, then softening again. This is different from feeling the baby move, w...

Within a span of six cruel years, Leta Stachura lost her mother, father, father-in-law, and grandmother -- and then her husband of almost 34 years. Without the Family and Medical Leave Act, she says, she would have lost her job with Federal Express and her sanity as well. "My husband died at home with me. The only thing left standing after this was me and my job. I needed it for financial suppor...

In many ways, Josh Kraft of Billings, Montana, had perfect training for fatherhood. As the oldest of nine children, he was already an expert baby wrangler who knew his way around a diaper. But when Kraft and his wife started talking about having kids of their own, a few doubts and fears started to creep in. Was he really ready? Was his wife ready? How could they afford a child? In the end, the des...

The reason you hear so much about folic acid and pregnancy is because this B vitamin protects against a group of serious birth defects. However, if you're like most women, you don't get enough folic acid (officially known as B9) from your diet alone. For this reason, doctors often recommend that women who are pregnant or trying to conceive take prenatal vitamins containing folic acid. What's the...

In order to determine whether you've developed gestational diabetes during pregnancy, doctors may test your blood sugar level. The most common procedure is a glucose screening. Most women are tested between the 24th and 28th weeks of pregnancy, the time when the body is likely to begin having greater difficulty processing glucose. If you are at high risk, your doctor will likely test you much ear...

What are hemorrhoids? Hemorrhoids, sometimes called piles, are inflamed or swollen veins (think varicose veins) either on the outside of the anus or inside it. They are often painless, but they may bleed, hurt, or itch when irritated. Sometimes hemorrhoids can become inflamed and engorged with blood, causing them to become quite painful. Occasionally, a blood clot can form in a hemorrhoid, making...

Why should I have a blood test for hepatitis B? Like other forms of hepatitis, hepatitis B is a virus that can cause severe liver damage. Unfortunately, a third of the people who have hepatitis B fail to show any symptoms of the disease. (Doctors would say they are "asymptomatic.") In fact, they may not even know they have it. The danger during pregnancy is that the virus can be easily transmitte...

Carrie Hook had her first two babies in a Minneapolis hospital, where she was surrounded by obstetricians, nurses, and cutting-edge technology. When she had her third baby, she was surrounded by a midwife, a house contractor (her husband, Joe), and a tarp to protect the living room carpet. Home births aren't for everyone. But if Hook ever has another baby, she knows exactly where she wants to be...

Long before you take your new baby home, you need to think about a crucial issue: Who will take care of her at times when parents are otherwise occupied? Whether you're staying at home or quickly going back to work, you can make sure your baby spends all day, every day, in a safe, nurturing environment. Many factors will influence your choice, including cost, convenience, and, most of all, your ba...

Scary stories about cats and babies abound, most nothing more than superstition. But there are real diseases associated with changing the kitty litter while you're pregnant. Fortunately, with a few precautions, you can minimize the risks and still enjoy your favorite feline. Why is kitty litter a potential danger during pregnancy? Cats can become transmitters of toxoplasmosis, a disease they can ...

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