Pregnancy and Lactation Weekly Digest

For the Week Ending January 12, 2020. 

Sassy mom merch

Mothering has always been difficult, and in the age of social media–when everyone else’s seemingly effortless and perfect family life is constantly on display–it can seem especially so. Snarky T-shirts can winkily help moms cope, by acknowledging that perfection is untenable and that we are all trying as hard as we can. Or do they only pretend to subversively protest the status quo while actually kind of maintaining it? Read more here.

This is important for you because you may “run on coffee, wine, and Amazon Prime”; but do you really need that emblazoned across your chest?

Pacifier biosensor

Scientists have developed a pacifier that monitors babies’ saliva glucose levels, which are then reported to a smartphone app. Since the method is noninvasive, perhaps it can one day be used to monitor other substances as well. Read more here.

This is important for you because such a cool idea right? How has this not been done before?!

Artificial wombs

“If fetuses were to develop in artificial wombs, women would finally be free to pursue their interests and desires outside of their reproductive duties.” Whoa. Feminists are (mostly) rejoicing; but this bioethicist wonders if that is in fact true, and if it is, if it is necessarily good. Read more here and a great article about artificial womb published in The Pulse here.

This is important for you because an artificial womb could definitely be medically beneficial in certain cases. And it is definitely interesting to think about the role of the womb, and what that means for the relationship between the womb and the fetus. Is it merely a container?

HIV treatment

Many pregnant women with HIV are given treatment regimens that may or may not be safe for the babies they’re carrying; they have not been tested, so we don’t know for sure. Read more here. Read Pregistry’s expert report on HIV during pregnancy here.

This is important for you because pregnant women need to be included in clinical trials so we can get this information.

The most popular article on The Pulse this week was Pharmacists: A Go-To Resource for Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women. Read it here.

Diana Gitig
Dr. Diana Gitig has a Ph.D. in cell biology and genetics from Cornell University, and has been writing about issues in biology – from molecular biology to cancer to immunology to neuroscience to nutrition to agriculture - for the past fifteen years. She has three teenaged children.

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