Posts tagged #miscarriages

Recurrent Pregnancy Loss

Miscarriage occurs in up to 1 out of 4 pregnancies, and for some women, this can be a recurring event. 

Birth of a healthy baby depends upon a unique and intricate set of events including fertilization of an embryo, successful implantation, adaptation of the mother's hormones and physiology to the baby, ability to grow a placenta to meet the baby's needs, appropriate growth of the uterus and cervix, and precise growth of the baby and timing of birth. That's a lot!

Anywhere in that process, something can go wrong, and in some women, it occurs repeatedly. Conditions including autoimmunity, polycystic ovarian syndrome, diabetes, and physical abnormalities can result in recurrent pregnancy loss.

Pregnancy is divided into three stages: conception to week 4, weeks 5-9, and then weeks 10-delivery. Most of pregnancy losses occur in the earlier two stages, often associated with genetic factors. while later miscarriage is more frequently autoimmune or anatomic. 

The evaluation of recurrent pregnancy loss includes a complete medical history and investigation into other conditions, family medical history, physical exam, and laboratory evaluation.

Depending on your specific history, stage of pregnancy loss, and laboratory tests, treatment will be individualized to address your specific needs.

Learn more here

Posted on November 7, 2014 .

"Contaminants" in the Environment

Researchers at the University of Minnesota examined a nearby stream to determine its levels of toxicants. What they found was surprising. Prescription and over-the-counter drugs were found at detectable levels, apparently being released by the sewage treatment facility. This included drugs such as anti-convulsants, anti-depressants, and steroid hormones, but also environmental toxins such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).

The truth is, these compounds, along with the many other chemicals being leached into our environment at very low levels, have known and unknown effects on human health.

Many attribute the decline in fertility over the past 40 years has been attributed to these "contaminants", often classified as EDCs or endocrine disrupting chemicals. An example of these include polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), which, despite being banned in 1979, still linger in our soil and water. Once inside the body, they mimic estrogen and other hormones, and studies show a relationship between EDCs and male infertility, endometriosis, recurrent miscarriages, and even hormonal cancers.

What can you do?

Reduce your PCB and contaminant exposure at home as much as possible. Here are some tips:

1. Take high quality fish oil supplements that are screened for possible contaminants

2. If you consume animal products, ensure that they are organic sources of dairy and grass-fed grass-finished meat

3. Consume organic fruits and vegetables, especially the "Dirty Dozen"

4. Avoid eating fish that are heavily contaminated, such as tuna and swordfish (the complete list here)

5. Ensure adequate fiber intake. Fiber binds up hormones and EDCs to allow for better elimination

Contaminants are present in the environment, their role is unknown, and they could be a threat to your health. Thankfully, there are steps that you may take to reduce your contaminant exposure and improve your health.