Saturday, August 12, 2006

Pediatrics Takes on Women's Health

The journal Pediatrics has several women's health-related articles in its August 2006 issue.

  • Pregnant teens have unrealistic views of motherhood
    Rosengard C, Pollock L, Weitzen S, Meers A, Phipps MG. Concepts of the Advantages and Disadvantages of Teenage Childbearing Among Pregnant Adolescents: A Qualitative Analysis. Pediatrics 2006; 118(2): 503-510.
    The 4woman link above has a good summary. Here is some additional information from the Pediatrics article:
    Researchers recruited 247 pregnant teens (ages 12-19) in Providence, RI during their first prenatal visit to a women's health clinic. The participants responded in writing to open-ended questions about the advantages and disadvantages of motherhood. Among the findings:

  • "Fifty-eight girls (23.5%) indicated that their current pregnancy was intended (by indicating that they wanted to be pregnant immediately, within the next few months, or within the next year), and 189 (76.5%) indicated that it was unintended."
  • "Seventy-three girls (29.8%) reported at least 1 previous pregnancy, and of those, 36 (14.7% of the total sample and 49.3% of those with a previous pregnancy) indicated that they already had at least 1 child. Of those 73 who reported a previous pregnancy, 18 (24.7%) reported a previous abortion, and 31 (42.5%) reported a previous miscarriage."

    Quotes from some of the teens are particularly alarming. While many expressed no advantages of teen motherhood, others responded with statements such as:
  • "'An advantage is that I feel a baby will make me and my boyfriends relationship closer' (14-year-old, Hispanic, unintended pregnancy, no previous pregnancy)."
  • "'being able to play along with your child not only being his/her parent but being a friend' (13-year-old, non-Hispanic, unintended pregnancy, no previous pregnancy)."
  • "'[A]lso if I have a infant now later on when I want to become a lawyer my baby will be old enough' (15 non-Hispanic, unintended pregnancy, no previous pregnancy)."

    Hispanic teens, teens with previous pregnancy, and those who intended the pregnancy reported fewer negative aspects of the pregnancy compared to other teens.

    DuRant RH, Champion H, Wolfson M. The Relationship Between Watching Professional Wrestling on Television and Engaging in Date Fighting Among High School Students. Pediatrics 2006; 118(2): e265-e272.
    Forget the wrestlling; this is the interesting bit: "Among females, 8.5% said that a date had started a physical fight with them or hit them during the previous 12 months, but 9.4% stated that they had initiated a date fight. Only 4.6% of males confessed to being the perpetrator of a date fight, but 6.3% said that they had a date, girlfriend, or boyfriend start a fight or hit them during the previous 12 months."
    Okay, so more girls reported starting physical fights with dates than boys, and none of the percentages really match (9.4% of girls reporting starting a fight with a date, vs. 6.3% of boys who reported having a date start a fight). Is the difference in same-sex couples? What are the motivations for the different reporting? Recall bias or response bias?

    Taylor CV, Bryson S, Celio Doyle AA, Luce KH, Cunning D, Abascal LB, Rockwell R, Field AE, Striegel-Moore R, Winzelberg AJ, Wilfley DE. The Adverse Effect of Negative Comments About Weight and Shape From Family and Siblings on Women at High Risk for Eating Disorders. Pediatrics 2006; 118(2): 731-738.
    Researchers retrospectively looked at 455 college women who had high weight and shape concerns who participated in an eating disorder prevention program, regarding "perceived family negative comments about weight, shape, and eating; social adjustment; social support; self-esteem; and childhood abuse and neglect." According to their analysis: "Negative comments were significantly associated with retrospective report of greater maximum body size before age 18 years, minority status, and biological father's maximum body size. It was not related to parental education or biological mother's maximum body size. In a multivariate analysis, higher levels of parental criticism were associated with higher reported emotional abuse and neglect regardless of the body size. High levels of sibling criticism interacted with higher maximum body size before age 18 years to predict emotional abuse and neglect. Higher maximum body size before 18 years was related to higher levels of emotional neglect."

    Martino SC, Collins RL, Elliott MN, Strachman A, Kanouse DE, Berry SH. Exposure to Degrading Versus Nondegrading Music Lyrics and Sexual Behavior Among Youth. Pediatrics 2006; 118(2): e430-e441
    "Multivariate regression analyses indicated that youth who listened to more degrading sexual content at T2 were more likely to subsequently initiate intercourse and to progress to more advanced levels of noncoital sexual activity, even after controlling for 18 respondent characteristics that might otherwise explain these relationships. In contrast, exposure to nondegrading sexual content was unrelated to changes in participants' sexual behavior."
    Another Nashville blogger mentioned the researchers' failure to distinguish between causation and correlation. For the life of me, I can't figure out who it was to link to it. Punk Ass Blog says, "To summarize for all the people who hear “sex” and then tune everything out after being blinded with repressed lust in the form of moral outrage, in this study sexual content doesn’t correlate to sexual behavior. Objectification does."

    Off Topic from Pediatrics:
    McGeehan J, Shields BJ, Wilkins JR, Ferketich AK, Smith GA. Escalator-Related Injuries Among Children in the United States, 1990–2002. Pediatrics 2006; 118(2): e279-e285.
    Did you know there are still an estimated 2,000 injuries to children (ages 0-19) from escalators every year? Children younger than 5 had the most injuries, and most were from falls. This caught my eye: "Six percent of injuries to children who were younger than 5 years involved a stroller, with most injuries occurring when a child fell out of the stroller while on the escalator." I swear I heard a comedian on television within the last week making a joke about stroller/escalator injuries and how every escalator he's ever seen had a sign reading "No Strollers." Uh, and, "amputations and avulsions were uncommon." [shudder]

    Technorati Tags: ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ;
    MeSH Tags: Adolescent; Adolescent Behavior; Body Image; Eating Disorders; Elevators and Escalators; Music/psychology; Pregnancy in Adolescence; Sexual Behavior; Violence; Wounds and Injuries


    Blogger BeckyJ said...

    Great summary of articles!

    Re: potential response bias in the DuRant et al article--"social acceptability" may be a key factor to consider. Is it more socially acceptable for females to report hitting males, as compared with males admitting that females hit them in a dating situation? It also may be less "acceptable" for a male to report instigating a physical altercation with a female -- the results note that more females reported that a date started a fight with them as compared with the proportion of males reporting that they instigated a physical fight with a date. Hard to tell without confirming via another means (e.g. another data collection technique or resurveying across time to see how consistent the answers are).

    The issue of violence in general is also interesting to consider -- does watching wrestling make someone more likely to start a physical fight or be involved in the other measures of violence examined in the study, or could it perhaps just make it more acceptable to report such activity? Or is watching wrestling maybe not the base issue, but a confounding variable --- other social factors such as socioeconomic status, amount of parental supervision in the home, etc may be key factors to consider in future research.

    11:22 AM  
    Blogger Rachel said...

    Thanks, and I think you're right social acceptability may play a role. Boys know they're in for trouble if they admit to hitting girls, but I think that is less true for girls who admit to hitting boys.

    11:31 AM  

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