Brain dead pregnant woman taken off life support after 2 months

Pregnant, brain-dead woman at center of legal fight between hospital and family removed from life support – John Peter Smith Hospital at Fort Worth kept a pregnant, brain-dead woman – Marlise Munoz – on life support for two months. On Friday, a state district judge ordered John Peter Smith Hospital to remove the woman, Marlise Muñoz, from life-support machines by 5 p.m. on Monday.

Cesarean delivery rates varied tenfold in US hospitals

U of M researchers find wide variation in cesarean delivery rates among US hospitals – Cesarean delivery is the most common surgery in the United States, performed on 1.67 million American women annually. The latest study, appearing in Health Affairs, shows that cesarean delivery rates varied tenfold across U.S. hospitals, from 7.1 percent to 69.9 percent.

Pregnant women spend longer in labor now than 50 years ago

NIH study finds women spend longer in labor now than 50 years ago — Changes in delivery practices appear to be main contributing factor – Women take longer to give birth today than did women 50 years ago, as per analysis of nearly 140,000 deliveries by NIH researchers in US. The change is likely due to changes in delivery room practice.

Family preferences influence decision making in very premature deliveries

Family preferences strongly influence decision making in very premature deliveries — Wide variation in practices and counseling reported in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology – When making decisions and counseling about risk and management options for deliveries between 22 and 26 weeks (periviable deliveries), obstetricians are heavily influenced by family preferences, particularly by the impression that parents consistently prefer to have everything possible done to prolong a pregnancy or “save the baby” through interventions such as cesarean section.

H1N1 may cause serious health risks for pregnant women

Study Finds H1N1 Associated With Serious Health Risks for Pregnant Women – Pregnant women who contract the H1N1 flu strain are at risk for obstetrical complications including fetal distress, premature delivery, emergency cesarean delivery and fetal death, according to a report in the May 24 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Teen birth rate fell 2 percent in US

Teen Birth Rates Drop in 2008 Following a Two-Year Increase – a new report by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – The teen birth rate in the United States fell 2 percent between 2007 and 2008, after rising the previous two years, according to a report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics.

Choosing VBAC or plan a repeat cesarean delivery

Panel questions ‘VBAC bans,’ advocates expanded delivery options for women — Parents’ preferences and risk factors should be weighed when choosing whether to pursue a vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC) or plan a repeat cesarean delivery – An independent panel convened this week by the National Institutes of Health confronted a troubling fact that pregnant women currently have limited access to clinicians and facilities able and willing to offer a trial of labor after previous cesarean delivery because of so-called VBAC bans.

Birth weights in US have declined

US birth weights on the decline — U.S. infants are getting smaller – Birth weights in US have declined during the past 15 years, revealed by researchers at the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute’s Department of Population Medicine.

Pregnancy is safe for multiple sclerosis patients

There is good news for women with multiple sclerosis (MS) who are pregnant or thinking about becoming pregnant. – Pregnant women with multiple sclerosis are only slightly more likely to have cesarean deliveries and babies with a poor prenatal growth rate than women who do not have multiple sclerosis (MS), revealed by US researchers.