Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Back Later, and Links for the Interim

Y'all, the last of the grandparents died yesterday, my Grandma W. I'll be traveling over the next couple of days for the services, so will not be updating here. In the meantime, check out some of these other blogs:

  • Emergiblog - the life and times of an emergency department RN. Includes a very long list of medicine-related blogs in the sidebar.
  • Women's Bioethics Blog - exactly what it sounds like
  • The Lactivist - breastfeeding activist
  • Milliner's Dream - doula blog
  • Abortion Clinic Days - from abortion providers (please don't go there just to be hostile - these ladies make a valiant attempt to explain where they're coming from and what they do, and keeping things civil is appreciated)
  • Belly Tales - student midwife blog - posts may be infrequent b/c the author is moving, but you should definitely check it out later
  • Ideas for Women: Women's Health Research News - I definitely owe author Trisha some linkage
  • All About My Vagina - not just about vaginas
  • Broadsheet
  • Scarleteen Newswire - assorted sexual health things
  • Reproductive Rights Blog

    Also:
  • Grand Rounds, a medicine-related blog carnival hosted this week by Medviews and including yours truly.
  • BlogHer - a whole network of female bloggers
  • Kaiser Network Daily Women's Health Policy Report
  • Tuesday, June 27, 2006

    Spot the Inconsistency - More on Breastfeeding

    Today's Tennessean (Nashville), alongside the article "Campaign targets bottle feeding," features an inaccurate headline that unintentionally spreads misinformation. The second box, which purported to list "benefits of not breastfeeding," actually lists drawbacks of not breastfeeding, or benefits of not formula-feeding, such as:

    "3) Babies might have diarrhea, constipation or harder stools more often than breastfed babies.
    4) Babies might need more doctor visits and are more likely to be hospitalized than breastfed babies"

    I sent the paper an email - there is enough debate and confusion on this issue already without our major local paper adding to it with sloppy editing. Even without a passing familiarity with breastfeeding, a quick read over the box sets up some clear contradictions between the box's headline and content.

    Related stories in today's Tennessean are Breast vs. Bottle Can Be Difficult Decision and Nursing Options. Good for them for trying to provide women with some info - let's just hope they get it right next time... and quickly correcting their error (see update below). This is a good reminder, though, not to take everything you read for truth, unexamined.

    Update: Their online content person responded to me, letting me know that the headline was correct in print, and the online caption has now been corrected to "Four Risks of not Breastfeeding." Yippee!

    Update#2: Apparently the Tennessean was a little uptight about my use of their errant graphic in this post, because I received a second email asking that it be taken down. Hey, I'm uptight about bad editing and the spread of misinformation. In any case, I took the offending image down, which I believe complies with their Terms of Service but not at all with larger principles of fair use.

    Update#3: Aunt B responds, in classic Aunt B style (i.e., smart, funny, and right)

    Technorati Tags: ; ;
    MeSH Tags: Breast Feeding; Infant Formula

    Monday, June 26, 2006

    National HIV Testing Day

    Tuesday June 27th is National HIV Testing Day, so go get tested. To find a testing site near you, search the HIV Testing Resources directory (you can search specifically for free testing). A list of campaign events is also provided by state on the NHTD website.

    Update: In the state of Tennessee, health departments offer free testing. A map of local departments with contact info is available. (Thanks to Nashville is Talking for the heads up on that)

    Technorati Tags: ;
    MeSH Tags: HIV Infections/diagnosis

    Sunday, June 25, 2006

    Bill to Focus on Postpartum Depression

    Via Belly Tales, a bill (S.3529) has been introduced in the Senate (on 6/15) by sponsor Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and co-sponsor Richard Durbin (D-IL) which would provide grant funds for expanded education of new mothers about postpartum depression, and require follow-up care with these mothers to screen for the condition. It would also generate additional research on PPD, via the National Institutes of Health.

  • Read the bill text (the legislation will be referred to as the "Mom's Opportunity to Access Health, Education, Research, and Support for Postpartum Depression Act" or the "MOTHERS Act.")
  • Senator Menendez's press release
  • The Amercian College of Nurse-Midwives endorses the Act
  • The Seattle Post-Intelligencer: Grief Becomes a Force for Change

    PPD Information:
  • Postpartum Depression - American College of Nurse-Midwives
  • Depression During and After Pregnancy - National Women's Health Information Center
  • Postpartum Depression and the "Baby Blues" - American Academy of Family Physicians
  • Postpartum Depression - MedlinePlus
  • Recognizing Postpartum Depression - NPR's All Things Considered, commentary from a rural job counselor
  • Postpartum Depression - Planned Parenthood
  • Postpartum Depression - March of Dimes
  • The Postpartum Blues - March of Dimes

    Technorati Tags: ;
    MeSH Tags: Depression, Postpartum
  • Saturday, June 24, 2006

    Utter Stupidity

    My name is Rachel and I have a MySpace account. With that out of the way, I got a "bulletin" from someone today that purports to quantify how much of a "badass" one is. 100 items are listed, each one worth a point, and the scoring system is as follows:
    10-20= goodie good
    21-30= a little rebelious
    31-40= getting hot baby
    41-50= rebel
    51-60= total bad girl/boy
    61-70= You are a pain in the *ss!
    71-80= f**king bad *ss
    81-90= cant believe you made it this far
    91-100= see u in hell


    Okay, let's start by acknowledging the stupidity of most of the "survey" bulletins that go around MySpace. Particularly when they are spread around by people closer to 30 than 20. Not to mention that this particular one was clearly geared toward the young, with items such as:
    21) missed curfew
    36) wore black nail polish
    53) been to a concert
    62) seen an R rated movie in theaters
    64) skipped school


    Okay, fine, it's a stupid, juvenile tame-waster. But let's look at some of the items you get a point for:
    17) cut yourself
    24) been to a therapist
    25) been to rehab
    65) had an eating disorder
    79) been sexually harrassed


    That's right kids, cut yourself, get touched inappropriately, and throw up your meals, and you too can be a total badass! I don't know why, but I'm completely infuriated by this, and by the near-30 guy who passed it along.

    The Breastfeeding Campaign

    Last week I mentioned a new breastfeeding campaign from the Department of Health and Human Services. There are currently two television spots, one featuring pregnant women in a logrolling competition, and the other featuring a pregnant woman riding a mechanical bull. The main messages of the ads are "breastfeed exclusively for 6 months," and "you wouldn't take risks before your baby is born, why start after?" Click the links above to view the ads; you can also read the transcripts for each ad. The complete set of print, television, and radio materials for the campaign is available here.

    The ads have generated a fair bit of controversy, because of the intended feeling of guilt many women think the ads are designed to generate if a woman does not or cannot breastfeed for 6 months. This seems to be a fair criticism, given that many women know breastfeeding is best, but may not have the support they need, particularly in the workplace, to breastfeed exclusively. There are some good comments over at Feminsting describing the difficulties some women had when trying to breastfeed. A Chicago Tribune editorial, "The Breast Police", also addresses reasons why women can't meet this goal, and says the HHS tactics are unnecessary, given that 70% of mothers at least attempt to breastfeed. NBC Nightly News also covered the ad campaign, and has accompanying video.

    The National Women's Health Information Center has a ton of breastfeeding information up, including coverage of the HHS campaign, but some of the information provided suggests the challenges that women will have. Among the recommendations:
  • "Breastfeed on demand" - in the section on Coping with Breastfeeding Challenges - how are women supposed to do that at work, where babies aren't welcome?

  • One section of the "Challenges" addresses going back to work, and says,
    "After you have your baby, try to take as much time off as possible"
    "Don't be afraid to request a clean and private area where you can pump your milk. If you don't have your own office space, you can ask to use a supervisor's office during certain times. Or you can ask to have a clean, clutter free corner of a storage room."

    In the Frequently Asked Questions:
    "Will breastfeeding tie me to my home?: Not at all! Breastfeeding can be convenient no matter where you are because you don't have to bring along feeding equipment like bottles, water, or formula. Your baby is all you need. Even if you want to breastfeed in private, you usually can find a woman's lounge or fitting room. If you want to go out without your baby, you can pump your milk beforehand, and leave it for someone else to give your baby while you are gone."
    Doesn't this assume 1) you can always take baby with you (like to work); 2) there actually is always a "women's lounge or fitting room" available (are women with babies only going out to shop?); 3) you have the resources to have someone to help who can feed the baby pumped milk if you do have to go out? The website does say, "Breastfeeding is more than a way to feed a baby, it becomes a lifestyle." How many women can afford to let that become their lifestyle, when money is needed to provide for the whole family?

    I can imagine that many, many women do not have the option to "take as much time off as possible," and don't have supervisors who are going to respond kindly to requests for accomodation. Are these recommendations completely out of touch with the situations of most working women? They seem to presume an office-type, professional environment. What of women who work at McDonald's, in factories, on farms? Are these employers going to allow women to take extra time off or take extra breaks to pump? Their babies might be most in need of the health benefits of breastfeeding, and they may be least able to provide them.

    La Leche League provides a nice rundown of breastfeeding-related legislation, so women can at least know their rights. Let's look at Tennessee's law:
    Tenn. Code Ann. ยง 50-1-305
    1999 Tn. ALS 161; 1999 Tenn. Pub. Acts 161; 1999 Tn. Pub. Ch. 161; 1999 Tn. SB 1856

    (a) An employer shall provide reasonable unpaid break time each day to an employee who needs to express breast milk for her infant child. The break time shall, if possible, run concurrently with any break time already provided to the employee. An employer shall not be required to provide break time under this section if to do so would unduly disrupt the operations of the employer.
    (b) The employer shall make reasonable efforts to provide a room or other location in close proximity to the work area, other than a toilet stall, where the employee can express her breast milk in privacy. The employer shall be held harmless if reasonable effort has been made to comply with this subsection.
    (c) For the purposes of this section, "employer" means a person or entity that employs one (1) or more employees and includes the state and its political subdivisions.
    Do you see the wiggle room in there? An employer is only required to try, not to actually provide necessary break time or appropriate areas. You just don't have the extra space? Extra break time would disrupt operations (such as in low-wage workplaces)? You're all set - don't worry about it.

    So how many U.S. women do breastfeed? Are they all completely unaware of the benefits? According to CDC data for 2004:
  • 70.3% ever breastfeed; 36.2% at 6 months (14.1% breastfeed exclusively); 17.8% breastfeed at 12 months; 38.5% are breastfeeding exclusively at 3 months. So women are starting out strong, but fewer are breastfeeding as time passes. Maybe they're returning to work, eh? Because they have to?
  • Married mothers are more likely to ever breastfeed (76.5%) than unmarried mothers (57.2%). Because they don't have the support to stay home or just leave the baby with somebody who will feed the pumped milk? Same thing holds up for poverty - more money = more breastfeeding. So... think there might be some societal or economic barriers to exclusive breastfeeding?

    The point, after all this, is that educating women about breastfeeding does not seem to be the problem. Reducing the barriers to making that a reality is the problem, and the HHS ads address that not at all.

    Blogs covering it:
  • Mad Melancholic Feminista: The Politics of Breastfeeding
  • St George Blog: Driving While Pregnant
  • Angry Pregnant Lawyer: Get me a beer and a smoke while I hop on this bull
  • One Tired Ema: Late to the Party
  • Broadsheet: More on Breastfeeding from the Times
  • Huffington Post: Maia Szalavitz: Breast Feed or Else? NYT, HHS Boost Sketchy Science, Neglect PPD

    Technorati Tags: ; ;
    MeSH Tags: Breast Feeding; Infant Formula
  • Back from unintentional hiatus...

    Next time I'm not going to post for over a week, I'll let y'all know. Things have been a little crazy around work and home, and I just haven't had the time or inclination to blog. I'll be doing a lot of catching up this weekend; some stories will be a week or so old, which I know seems like forever in the blogosphere, but I think they're important nonetheless.

    Tuesday, June 13, 2006

    "Breast Feed or Else"

    The New York Times has an article today, "Breast Feed or Else," which reviews the benefits of breastfeeding(for both baby and mother) and the risks of formula feeding. It also describes some of the barriers mothers face when attempting to breastfeed, such as workplace policies. The tone of some of the health officials quoted may spark heated reactions; according to the article, "Dr. Haynes, of the Health and Human Services Department, said, 'Our message is that breast milk is the gold standard, and anything less than that is inferior.'"

    I'll update this post later with more on the article, the evidence, breastfeeding resources, and the chart of CDC survey results on people's perceptions of breastfeeding vs the reality.

    Technorati Tags: ; ;
    MeSH Tags: Breast Feeding; Infant Formula

    Sunday, June 11, 2006

    LGBT AIDS Anniversary Coverage & General Health Resources

    Organizations:
  • AIDS@25: HIV & AIDS Media Resource Guide - from the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, this site provides information on how and when HIV/AIDS has been portrayed in television and film, a glossary of terms, and links to additional resources. A timeline and information on hot topics are forthcoming. (Hat tip to Ellen/the Pittsburgh Connection)
  • 25th anniversary of first reported case of AIDS a time to recommit to the fight - press release from the Human Rights Campaign

    Mass Media:
  • 25 Years of AIDS and The Early Faces of AIDS (Blade Blog) - Washington Blade (DC)
  • AIDS at 25: The lessons of the past help drive the goals of the future - MetroWeekly (DC)
  • 25 Years of AIDS: 19 Years HIV Positive - essay at metroG (Southern CA)
  • How AIDS Changed Us - San Francisco Chronicle
  • 25 Years of AIDS in New England - In Newsweekly (Boston)
  • Monday Marks 25th Anniversary of AIDS Pandemic - The Advocate
  • An unhappy birthday: AIDS at 25, lives lost, lives changed - PrideSource

    General Health Information:
  • Gay Men's Health Crisis
  • Gay and Lesbian Information - Avert.org
  • 10 things gay men, lesbians, and transgender persons should discuss with their healthcare providers - Gay and Lesbian Medical Association
  • Lesbian Health - National Women's Health Information Center
  • GayHealth
  • Health and HIV/AIDS - National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
  • The SafeGuards Project
  • Lesbian Health - Planned Parenthood
  • Learn More About Health Issues - National LGBT Health Awareness Week (click sidebar links)
  • National Coalition for LBGT Health (advocacy organization)
  • Lesbian Health Research Center
  • Mautner Project
  • GLBT Health - Seattle/King County Public Health
  • Sexual Orientation and Health Issues - Richard M. Johnston Health Sciences Library

    If you have resources to add to this list, please feel free to email me (see profile).

    Technorati Tags: ; ; ; ; ;
    MeSH Tags: Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome; HIV; Homosexuality, Female; Homosexuality, Male
  • Birth Stories

    Belly Tales (one of the midwifery blogs) has been posting a series of birth stories, which represent the varied personal experiences of assorted women.

    There are numerous other websites where women tell the stories of their childbirth experiences. A few of them:
  • American Pregnancy Association
  • Waterbirth International
  • Pregnancy.org
  • March of Dimes (NICU-focused)

    You can find many more (of varying website quality) using this search, and midwifery-specific birth stories using this search. Blogged stories can be found using the Technorati tags below.

    Something to ponder: What of online birth stories that represent birth practices that were not really appropriate for the woman described? It seems as though there is a vast potential for misinformation through the description of experiences that perhaps shouldn't have gone as they did, whether the teller is aware of it or not. Absorb with caution.

    Technorati Tags: ; ;
    MeSH Tags: Home Childbirth; Natural Childbirth; Parturition
  • Saturday, June 10, 2006

    Preconception Resources

    The following resources address preconception care for women in general, as well as for those with pre-existing diabetes and hypertension. It does not address gestational diabetes, gestational hypertension, or preeclampsia, as those are "post-conception" problems. Also, see the previous post on HIV Before and During Pregnancy.


    General Information:
    Pre-pregnancy Healthcare - UCLA Healthcare
    Preconception Care - CDC
    Before You're Pregnant - March of Dimes
    Your Pre-Pregnancy IQ - March of Dimes
    Trying to Get Pregnant?: Before you Start Trying - National Women's Health Information Center
    Care Before and During Pregnancy - National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
    Folic Acid and Pregnancy - Nemours Foundation
    Safe Motherhood: Promoting Health for Women Before, During, and After Pregnancy - CDC
    Risk Factors Present Before Pregnancy - Merck Manual Home Edition
    Preconception Checklist (PDF) - Wisconsin Association for Perinatal Care
    Becoming a Parent booklet (PDF) - Wisconsin Association for Perinatal Care
    Folic Acid (Easy to Read) - National Women's Health Information Center
    Ovulation Calculator - National Women's Health Information Center
    Pregnancy Pointers for Women with Psychiatric History - National Alliance on Mental Illness


    Diabetes:
    Pregnancy with Type 1 or Type 2 Diabetes - Women's Health Matters
    Pregnancy and Diabetes: Plan Your Pregnancy to Avoid Complications - MayoClinic.com
    Diabetes & Pregnancy FAQs - CDC
    (includes "What can happen to a woman with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes who becomes pregnant?" "What can happen to the baby of a woman with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes during pregnancy?" and "How can a woman with diabetes who wants to get pregnant prevent problems to herself and her baby?")
    Before Pregnancy - Type I Diabetes - American Diabetes Association
    Complications: Having a Healthy Pregnancy with Diabetes - March of Dimes
    Diabetes: Preconception Counseling - State of Florida Agency for Health Care Administration
    Preconception Risk Reduction: Diabetes in Pregnancy - March of Dimes


    Hypertension:
    Pregnancy: When You Have High Blood Pressure - MayoClinic.com
    Your Questions Answered: Medications and Getting Pregnant - American Heart Association
    High Blood Pressure During Pregnancy: March of Dimes
    How can Women with High Blood Pressure Prevent Problems During Pregnancy? - National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
    Women and High Blood Pressure - National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
    Management of Chronic Hypertension During Pregnancy: an Evidence Report - Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research
    (this is pretty technical, but it is basically a set of questions and answers regarding the medical evidence for treatment of hypertension during pregnancy)
    Pregnancy Complicated by Disease: Hypertension - the Merck Manual Home Edition
    Technorati Tags: ;
    MeSH Tags: Preconception Care; Pregnancy; Pregnancy, High-Risk

    Cellulitis Resources

    This is not strictly a women's health issue, except that I looked up information on it for a woman. This and the next post are going to be from materials recycled from non-work-related reference questions (except for that "nude photos of Heather Mills McCartney" thing...). Don't worry - I would never, ever tell who asked the question, so send me yours anytime.

    The basics: bacterial infection of the skin/tissue (lots of people get this on the legs); swollen red area that may be hot or tender; usually a strep or staph bacteria, beginning at the site of a bruise, cut, or other injury; spreads rapidly; VERY important to get treatment quickly when symptoms are noticed (seriously, no fooling around, can lead to very serious illness/death); treatment with oral antibiotics, or hospitalization w/ IV antibiotics if more advanced.

    Cellulitis - MayoClinic.com
    covers signs & symptoms, causes, risk factors, when to seek medical advice, screening and diagnosis, complications, treatment, prevention

    Cellulitis - Merck Manual Home Edition
    gives a general overview

    Cellulitis - eMedicine
    provides more clinical detail on the topic

    Health Information: Cellulitis - Brigham and Women's Hospital
    includes a good list of prevention tips

    Cellulitis - Encyclopedia section of MedlinePlus

    Technorati Tags: ;
    MeSH Tags: Cellulitis; exclude orbital cellulitis

    Topic Updates: AIDS and HPV Vaccine

    The posts on the 25th anniversary of AIDS and the newly approved HPV vaccine have been updated with additional coverage and resources, and will be continuously as new items appear.

    Friday, June 09, 2006

    FDA Approves First Vaccine Against HPV, Leading Cause of Cervical Cancer

    The FDA approved Merck's Gardasil vaccine today, which is intended to prevent infection with human papillomavirus strains that have been shown to cause cervical cancer, precancerous lesions, and genital warts. The vaccine was approved for use in women aged 9-26 years, and is expected to cost $120 for each dose in the 3-shot regimen, for a total of $360. According to Merck's website, the company "has created a new patient assistance program for vaccines. Through this new program, Merck will provide free vaccines to adults who are uninsured and who are unable to afford vaccines. Merck vaccines, including GARDASIL, will become available through this program in the third quarter of 2006."

    Coverage of the story:
  • FDA Press Release
  • Merck Press Release
  • New York Times, and another
  • Washington Post
  • National Cancer Institute Press Release
  • Women's Bioethics Project 1 and 2
  • And Now, the HPV Vaccine - Slate
  • FDA OKs first cervical cancer vaccine - CNN
  • Nuns, Cows and the Cervical Cancer Vaccine - Medgadget (and related press release from Rochester Medical Center)

    Related Resources:
  • HPV Fact Sheet - National Cancer Insitute
  • Gardasil Questions and Answers - FDA
  • HPV Vaccines for Cervical Cancer - National Cancer Institute
  • HPV Vaccine Questions and Answers - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Infection - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Make the Connection - this site, sponsored by Merck, provides information on the HPV/cervical cancer connection. And, hey, you can get a free bracelet (which is not made out of rubber).

    Also:
    In searching for resources on this topic, I came across this post (pretty high up in the Google results) disparaging the vaccine as "worthless" and "potentially dangerous." Says the author, Dr. Mercola: "By the way, Gardasil is completely worthless if you already have one of those viruses. The other bad news: Five women treated with Gardasil near the time of conception eventually had children who now suffer from birth defects, a problem for which Merck denies responsibility." Vaccines are intended to prevent infection with a virus, not to treat those who already have a virus, by definition. As to the second point, I haven't read through all of the trial reports, but the product labeling (PDF) states:
    "During clinical trials, 2266 women (vaccine = 1115 vs. placebo = 1151) reported at least 1 pregnancy each. Overall, the proportions of pregnancies with an adverse outcome were comparable in subjects who received GARDASIL and subjects who received placebo. Overall, 40 and 41 subjects in the group that received GARDASIL or placebo, respectively (3.6% and 3.6% of all subjects who reported a pregnancy in the respective vaccination groups), experienced a serious adverse experience during pregnancy. The most common events reported were conditions that can result in Caesarean section (e.g., failure of labor, malpresentation, cephalopelvic disproportion), premature onset of labor (e.g., threatened abortions, premature rupture of membranes), and pregnancy-related medical problems (e.g., pre-eclampsia, hyperemesis). The proportions of pregnant subjects who experienced such events were comparable between the vaccination groups. There were 15 cases of congenital anomaly in pregnancies that occurred in subjects who received GARDASIL and 16 cases of congenital anomaly in pregnancies that occurred in subjects who received placebo. Further sub-analyses were conducted to evaluate pregnancies with estimated onset within 30 days or more than 30 days from administration of a dose of GARDASIL or placebo. For pregnancies with estimated onset within 30 days of vaccination, 5 cases of congenital anomaly were observed in the group that received GARDASIL compared to 0 cases of congenital anomaly in the group that received placebo. The congenital anomalies seen in pregnancies with estimated onset within 30 days of vaccination included pyloric stenosis, congenital megacolon, congenital hydronephrosis, hip dysplasia and club foot. Conversely, in pregnancies with onset more than 30 days following vaccination, 10 cases of congenital anomaly were observed in the group that received GARDASIL compared with 16 cases of congenital anomaly in the group that received placebo. The types of anomalies observed were consistent (regardless of when pregnancy occurred in relation to vaccination) with those generally observed in pregnancies in women aged 16 to 26 years."
    Do you see what that's saying? Rates of complications were basically the same between the vaccine and placebo, except when the vaccine was administered 30 days or less from the onset of pregnancy. This is actually not that uncommon - I received an MMR vaccine recently was told in no uncertain terms that I was not to get pregnant for a month. It's a complication worth noting, but could presumably be significantly reduced by educating women at the time of vaccination. It turns out that Dr. Mercola has "natural" medicine wares to sell - here's the FDA's warning letter to Mercola with regards to misleading claims about some of his products.

    Previous Related Posts:
  • Women's Health News: FDA Committee Recommends Approval of HPV Vaccine
  • Women's Health News: HPV Vaccine Moves Closer to Approval
  • Women's Health News: Status of HPV Vaccine and Cervical Cancer Prevention

    Technorati Tags: ; ; ; ; ;
    MeSH Tags: Papillomavirus, Human; United States Food and Drug Administration; Uterine Cervical Neoplasms/prevention and control; Vaccines
  • Sunday, June 04, 2006

    HIV Before and During Pregnancy

    In a previous post, I have collected numerous resources on HIV/AIDS related to the grim anniversary of the disease in the United States. However, women who are or wish to become pregnancy have special concerns, such as treatment during pregnancy, awareness of HIV status, and prevention of transmission to the child. Below are several resources which address these topics:

    Information for Women:
  • Why does CDC recommend HIV screening for all pregnant women? - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • National HIV Testing Resources - database of testing sites
  • HIV/AIDS and Pregnancy - National Women's Health Information Center; information on HIV drugs in pregnancy, steps to prevent transmission to the child, and paying for care while pregnant
  • HIV, Pregnancy, and AZT - FamilyDoctor.org; answers to FAQs
  • HIV, Pregnancy, Mothers and Babies - AVERT; information on planning ahead (including ways to reduce transmission at conception when only one partner is HIV positive), drug therapy, and prevention of mother-to-child transmission
  • Pregnancy and HIV - The Well Project; information on what to do before you get pregnant, HIV drugs and pregnancy, prenatal tests and delivery
  • Quick Reference: HIV and AIDS in Pregnancy - March of Dimes
  • Pregnancy and HIV Disease: Issues that positive women may face when they're pregnant - Project Inform

    Technical Information (intended for clinicians, but provides some useful information):
  • Mother to Child Transmission - AETC National Resource Center; guidelines and clinician support
  • Perinatal Interventions - Women, Children, and HIV; overviews, clinical guidelines, best practices, policy analysis, and training materials.
  • Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV - World Health Organization; general info, data & graphs, recommended readings, and policy advocacy and technical documents
  • Rapid HIV Testing of Women in Labor and Delivery - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Counseling HIV-Infected Patients who Want to Have Children

    Technorati Tags: ; ; ;
    MeSH Tags: Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome; HIV; HIV Infections
  • Saturday, June 03, 2006

    A Quarter Century of AIDS - A Collection of News and Resources

    Numerous news outlets have been supplying coverage marking the 25th anniversary of AIDS. On June 5, 1981, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a piece in its Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report publication describing 5 cases of Pneumocystis pneumonia among homosexual men in Los Angeles. These men were later recognized as the first reported cases of AIDS in the United States. The following are news items marking a quarter century of the epidemic and our progress towards controlling it, and consumer health websites providing information on the disease. This is a long list of resources, but they are well worth perusing, even if only a little at a time.

    Goverment News & Resources:

    Mass Media:

  • U.N. Strengthens Call for a Global Battle Against AIDS - New York Times
  • AIDS, at 25, Offers no Easy Answers - New York Times
  • The State of AIDS, 25 Years After the First, Quiet Mentions - New York Times
  • Spread of AIDS is Slowing, UN Report Finds - New York Times
  • Circumcision Studied in Africa as AIDS Preventative - New York Times
  • Fight AIDS at a Store Near You: New Products Among Funding Sources Discussed at U.N. Meeting - Washington Post
  • U.N. Group Sets Compromise on AIDS Policy
  • Progress for Some, Hopelessness for Many - ABC News
  • Viewpoints: AIDS 25 Years On - BBC News

  • 25 Years Into it, AIDS has a Face for Many of Us - Tennessean (Nashville)

    Organizations:
  • AIDSAction
  • The AIDS Memorial Quilt
  • amFAR - The Foundation for AIDS Research
  • Black AIDS Institute
  • Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS
  • Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation
  • Global AIDS Alliance
  • Human Rights Watch - HIV/AIDS and Human Rights
  • International AIDS Vaccine Initiative
  • KNOWHIVAIDS.org
  • Latino Commission on AIDS
  • National AIDS Fund
  • National Minority AIDS Council
  • National Association of People with AIDS
  • National Catholic AIDS Network
  • Student Global AIDS Campaign
  • UNICEF - HIV/AIDS
  • United Nations Development Fund for Women - Gender and HIV/AIDS

    Health Information:
  • National HIV Testing Resources - search for a testing site near you and get answers to frequently asked questions
  • MedlinePlus: AIDS
  • AIDS-related Cancers - National Cancer Institute
  • Women and HIV/AIDS - National Women's Health Information Center
  • AIDS and HIV Questions and Answers - Planned Parenthood
  • HIV and AIDS - KidsHealth.org
  • HIV/AIDS Questions and Answers - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • HIV Infection: The Basics - JAMA Patient Page
  • How to Use a Condom - American Social Health Association
  • How Do People Get AIDS? - KidsHealth.org
  • Living with AIDS - MedlinePlus
  • AIDS Medicines - MedlinePlus
  • AIDS and Infections - MedlinePlus
  • Your Rights as a Person with HIV Infection or AIDS - U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

    Other:
  • AIDS Media Center: Global AIDS Resource for the Media
  • AIDS: The First 25 Years - AIDS Clinical Care journal
  • Face of AIDS: Global AIDS Film Archive
  • United Nations Development Programme: HIV/AIDS
  • World Bank: HIV/AIDS
  • Kaiser Network Daily HIV/AIDS Report
  • HIVInSite - current HIV/AIDS info
  • HIV and AIDS: History, Pictures, and Posters - AVERT
  • The History of AIDS
  • History of the AIDS Epidemic
  • AIDS clinical trials
  • HIV Infections clinical trials
  • HIV Vaccine clinical trials
  • Local HIV/AIDS Service Organizations in the U.S.
  • The HIV-AIDS Pandemic at 25: The Global Response - New England Journal of Medicine
  • AIDS at 25: The Timeline of an Epidemic - GlaxoSmithKline

    Note: Locally, Vanderbilt is conducting HIV vaccine research - Vanderbilt HIV Vaccine Research Program

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    MeSH Tags: Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome; HIV; HIV Infections
  • Friday, June 02, 2006

    Off Topic: An Open Letter to the Nashville Rage

    I appreciate the Rage's coverage of libraries and librarians in the current issue. However, I should point out that working at a bookstore does NOT make someone a librarian, as the caption to the Becky Callaway picture currently suggests on your home page. Becky may well be a librarian by training, and librarians are certainly taking on non-traditional roles in increasing numbers. However, not everyone who works in a bookstore (in fact, most of them) or a library is a "librarian." Librarians have masters degrees in their field, with advanced, specialized training in information organization, retrieval, and provision. Working around books does not a librarian make, much like working in housing construction does not make one an architect. I suggest this page of the Department of Labor's Occupational Outlook Handbook for a more complete description of the profession. It's unfortunate that you were unable to make this distinction and profile any of a number of librarians in the Nashville area in conjunction with your themed issue. Perhaps this is why other news outlets employ librarians to assist in background research for articles.

    Rachel, MLIS (rockin' the sexy librarian look)

    Update: I received a prompt, appropriate response back from the Rage, indicating that they would have the web folks fix the caption.