2022

Healio (1/12, Stulpin) reports a study has “found that SARS-CoV-2 infection during pregnancy is associated with an increased risk for adverse pregnancy outcomes” including “cesarean sections, preterm birth and fetal growth restriction.” The national cohort study published in the Journal of Infectious Diseases used “de-identified administrative claims data for 78,283 pregnancies” and found that infection was also tied to a greater risk for postpartum hemorrhage, “but was not associated with risk for miscarriage, antepartum hemorrhage or stillbirth.”

The New York Times (1/6, Rabin) reports, “Shortly after coronavirus vaccines were rolled out about a year ago, women started reporting erratic menstrual cycles after receiving the shots.” And now, “a study published on Thursday found that women’s menstrual cycles did indeed change following vaccination against the coronavirus.” Researchers “reported that women who were inoculated had slightly longer menstrual cycles after receiving the vaccine than those who were not vaccinated.” The findings were published in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology.

The AP (1/6, Neergaard) reports the research “tracked nearly 4,000 U.S. women through six menstrual cycles and on average, the next period after a shot started about a day later than usual,” although “there was no change in the number of days of menstrual bleeding after COVID-19 vaccination.” In a statement, Dr. Christopher Zahn of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists said that the findings provide “important new evidence underscoring that any impact of the COVID vaccines on menstruation is both minimal and temporary.”

Also reporting are NPR (1/6, Brumfiel), CNN (1/6, McPhillips) and The Lily (1/6, McShane).

The New York Times (1/4, Rabin) reports “women who received Covid vaccinations while pregnant were at no greater risk of” preterm births or small-for-gestational age births, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study that “looked at some 46,079 singleton pregnancies that resulted in a live birth, including some 10,064 among women who received one or more doses of Covid vaccine between Dec. 15, 2020, and July 22, 2021, during their pregnancies.” Overall, the study found that “6.6 percent of the babies were born prematurely, before 37 weeks of pregnancy, and 8.2 percent were born small for their gestational age, weighing less than 5 pounds and 8 ounces.”

The Hill (1/4, Coleman) reports the study “found there were 4.9 preterm births, occurring before 37 weeks’ gestation, per 100 live births among vaccinated pregnant women,” while “preterm births reached seven per 100 live births” among unvaccinated pregnant women. There were no differences in SGA births among both groups.

2021

Healio (12/14, Gawel) reports, “Women who live around more green space throughout their lives are less likely to experience PMS symptoms than women living in areas that are less green, according to a study” that also found they “were less likely to experience anxiety,” depression, difficulty sleeping, “and breast tenderness or abdominal bloating.” For the study, published in Environment International, investigators “gathered data between 2013 and 2015 from 1,069 women aged 18 to 49 years...participating in the multicenter, population-based European RHINESSA cohort.”

Healio (12/9, VanDewater) reports that a retrospective cohort study “found that pregnant patients who were vaccinated against SARS-CoV-2 were less likely to have severe COVID-19 or any severity of the disease in the context of the delta variant surge.” The findings were published in Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Reuters (12/6, Brooks) reports, “Radiologists observed significant changes in the brain structure of fetuses exposed to alcohol in the first MRI-based study to investigate the issue.” The findings were presented at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America.

Dr. Laura Erdman and Dr. Lindsay Morrell have been named Top Doctors by Baltimore Magazine. Each year, Baltimore Magazine names Greater Baltimore’s best physicians—in every specialty imaginable.

 

Healio (10/21, Marabito) reports, “COVID-19 vaccination did not impair fertility, early pregnancy outcomes or sperm quality, according to findings from three studies.” The results were presented at the virtual American Society for Reproductive Medicine annual meeting.

Dr. Laura Erdman joined Fox 45 News to clear up concerns about pregnant women getting the Covid vaccine.

“It is as urgent as it can be for pregnant women to get their Covid vaccine,” said Dr. Laura Erdman, MD, OB-GYN with Capital Women’s Care at GBMC. “The reason why it’s so urgent is because we are seeing now, after a year and a half of being in this pandemic, that our patients who are pregnant, if they do get Covid, they do get sicker than women who are not pregnant,” she added.

Dr. Erdman compared the level of sickness to the Flu, which in pregnant women adds another risk factor as far as needing a stay in the hospital to be treated. With Covid that also includes a high risk of death, according to doctors.

When it comes to concerns about how the vaccine could affect a pregnant woman and her baby, Dr Erdman says, “I have the utmost confidence in our regulatory organizations the FDA and the CDC.”

She said while the vaccine is new, it’s new because this virus is new, however the research and the science behind the vaccine is not new. “We, the broader medical community, has been researching MRNA and it’s use in vaccines since about 2012,” Dr. Erdman said.

Dr. Erdman said she has not seen any fertility issues when it comes to the Covid vaccine. She encourages everybody to get the Covid vaccine as soon as they can.

More Information:
Watch the video on the Fox 45 News website.

Healio (9/30, Schaffer) reports, “Menopausal hormone therapy is safe and effective for many women experiencing bothersome symptoms like hot flashes, but treatment should be individualized for people with certain risk factors, according to” a plenary presentation given at the North American Menopause Society annual meeting by Juliana M. Kling, MD, MPH, NCMP, FACP, associate professor of medicine and chair of the division of women’s health internal medicine at Mayo Clinic Arizona. Dr. Kling said, “Understanding the risks and benefits of HT by organ and system will allow us to counsel our patients appropriately.” She added, “Overall, the benefits of HT in healthy, symptomatic women generally outweigh the risk under age 60 years for most women.”

The Hill (9/2, Castronuovo) reports the NIH “announced this week that it was awarding grants...to look into reports from some women of irregular or missing menstrual periods after getting vaccinated against COVID-19.” The agency “said that the awards...would help determine whether there is a connection between any reported menstrual cycle changes and the Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines currently in use in the U.S.” The agency “said that some women have reported irregular or missing periods, heavier than normal bleeding and other menstrual changes.”

The Chicago Tribune (9/2, Stock) reports that while researchers have so far not established a link between the shots and abnormal menstruation, one researcher “said that it is ‘biologically feasible’ because of the way the shot generates an immune response in the body.”

Healthcare IT News (7/8, Jercich) reports research published online in the Journal of Medical Internet Research reveals that “virtual visits facilitate healthcare access and relationship-building, contributing to satisfying relationship-centered care, a crucial aspect of contemporary patient experiences.” Investigators arrived at that conclusion after surveying “426 adult patients with a virtual visit between June and July 2017 – notably, before the COVID-19 pandemic more broadly normalized telemedicine.” The study revealed that “the average overall satisfaction score was 4.4 out of 5, with about 82% of respondents saying their virtual visit was as good as an in-person visit with a clinician,” and “more than half of the respondents agreed that their virtual visit was better than an in-person one.”

Virtual visits are still available here at Capital Women's Care - Division 56/Charles Street OB/GYN!

Pregnant women who contract COVID-19 are more likely to have a severe infection, be hospitalized and need a ventilator, experts say. But as of last month, only 23% have received at least one dose of a COVID vaccine during pregnancy, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data.

More Information:
Read the full article on the CBS News website.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends that all eligible persons, including pregnant and lactating individuals, receive a COVID-19 vaccine or vaccine series. Obstetrician-gynecologists and other women’s health care practitioners should lead by example by being vaccinated and encouraging eligible patients to be vaccinated as well.

More Information:
Read the full article on the ACOG website.

Forbes (7/29, Gordon) reports that a recent study published in Menopause has found that “the onset of menopause symptoms may begin earlier than previously understood.” The “global survey of women ages 35 to 55 investigated the experiences of women still getting monthly periods with only slight changes to menstrual cycle length or changes in flow compared to women with greater cycle changes. Approximately 1,500 survey respondents were categorized as being in either the late reproductive stage (LRS)...or the menopausal transition (MT) stage.” The “researchers compared how women in the LRS and MT stages experience symptoms typically associated with menopause, analyzing the type, frequency, and burden of symptoms experienced by each group.” And “the most surprising finding: Women in LRS and women in MT may be more similar than they are different.”