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Getting Pregnancy with ART

Getting Pregnancy with ART

We generally talk about ART as occurring in cycles. A cycle of ART begins with the stimulation of the woman’s ovaries to produce eggs (oocytes). Commercially produced gonadotrophin (ovary-stimulating) hormones are used in higher than usual doses to stimulate «super-ovulation,» or more eggs than would normally be produced and brought to maturity in one cycle. The development of these oocytes is monitored by ultrasound until they are ready to be released from the ovary (ovulation). Ultrasound checks are performed at least three or four times in the early part of the cycle, sometimes every day, along with measurements of estrogen and other hormones. Maturation of the oocytes is then brought about by giving a syntheric form of luteinizing hormone, a pituitary hormone related to ovulation...

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Dealing with Placental Insufficiency during Pregnancy

Dealing with Placental Insufficiency during Pregnancy

Placental insufficiency is a condition where there is a reduction in the placenta’s ability to sustain the baby. The placenta or afterbirth is the organ within the uterus where the baby’s blood vessels exchange waste products from the baby’s system for oxygen and other nutrients supplied by the mother’s blood. If the placenta either does not develop normally or starts to deteriorate for some reason, the baby will go short of essential materials for growth. This will be apparent if your uterus is not growing at the expected rate and may be demonstrated by ultrasound. Placental insufficiency can be caused by raised blood pressure, smoking, syphilis, diabetes and bleeding in pregnancy.

You can be reasonably sure that your placenta is functioning well if you are aware of the baby kicking frequ...

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Assisted Reproductive Technology — The Emotional Toll

Assisted Reproductive Technology — The Emotional Toll

Be mindful that a tremendous emotional toll can be exacted by the cycle-to-cycle swings of hopefulness and grief, even if they are eventually followed by triumph. It takes a strong relationship to hold up under these stresses. Besides the natural emotional aspects of all of this, you will also be subject to yo-yo mood swings because of the hormones used in ART. Here are a couple of stories of real people that illustrate what we’re talking about.

Sydney was a teacher, in fact she was head of a prestigious private high school. She and Tom had married in their mid-thirties and were busy with their careers until, when Sydney was 41, they realized that they wanted to have a family before it was too late...

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Home Birth Tips — Death at Birth

Home Birth Tips — Death at Birth

On rare occasions — statistically more rarely than in hospital — a baby delivered at home dies, either before it is born or shortly afterwards. This is always a tragedy and there really is no consolation. However there are aspects of stillbirth or neonatal death at home from which bereaved families draw some comfort. (If you feel that your baby would not have died if you had been in hospital then the following considerations will be of no help at all.)

If his or her death seems to be inevitable or unpreventable, you may prefer that your baby is born at home...

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Homebirth Midwife What You Should Know

Homebirth Midwife What You Should Know

Opting for delivery by your community midwives is not necessarily straightforward. Local health trusts vary in their enthusiasm for providing a home birth service, so that near neighbours may get a completely different service. The midwives, from the most senior, the director of midwifery services, downwards may feel obliged to deter you, either as a result of their own beliefs or because they are so instructed by their health authority policy. It seems likely that there would be many more home births if women were given a real choice in the matter, but all too frequently they find it difficult to ask for one or find that, if they do, they are further put off by the attitude of the midwife they first speak to.

It may be that the policy in your area is one of discouraging home birth and tha...

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Pregnancy and Previous Thromboembolism

Pregnancy and Previous Thromboembolism

DVT is a risk for any pregnant woman, because in pregnancy, there are physiologic changes that enhance the blood clotting mechanisms of the blood, preparing the body for the separation of the placenta and the minor tearing that accompanies most normal deliveries. These changes set the stage for one of the significant causes of maternal mortalityЎЄpulmonary embolism. (A thrombus or thrombosis is a blood clot forming within a vein, usually a vein of the legs or pelvis. An embolus is a thrombus that breaks free of its attachment to the blood vessel wall and travels in the bloodstream to a major organ, such as the brain, lungs, or heart, causing serious illness or even death...

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