The Woodruff Lab contributes to the Women’s Health Research Institute and Oncofertility Consortium blogs. Read the latest information disseminated from these blogs below:  

New Resource Available to Navigate Complex Medical Terminology

You care about your health and you try to keep up on the latest research.  But you don’t know the difference between the endometrium and the cervix?   Or how about aneuploid and diploid?   A new educational resource is now at your finger tips called Repropedia.   Repropedia is a free web based dictionary of scientific terms used in reproductive and women’s health research.   Created by the Center for Reproductive Sciences at Northwestern University, Repropedia defines complex terms in easy to understand language. Just click on the word above or check it out HERE.

Individualized Diet Useful to Relieve Interstitial Cystitis (IC) Flareups

There is a lot of information on the web promoting various diets for interstitial cystitis (IC), a painful bladder condition with many different symptoms.  Both the IC clinical guidelines of the American Urological Association (AUA) and the chronic pelvic pain practice bulletin of the American College of Obstetrical Gynecology (ACOG) recommend dietary modification as a useful approach for helping to manage IC and chronic pelvic pain.

Vitamin D and Obesity in Women

Overweight women with low Vitamin D levels who lose more than 15% of their body weight experience a significant increase in levels of this nutrient, according to a new study by researchers at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center. “Since vitamin D is generally lower in persons with obesity, it is possible that low vitamin D could account, in part, for the link between obesity and diseases such as cancer, heart disease and diabetes,” said Caitlin Mason, PhD, lead author of the study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Cancer Survivors Can’t Shake Pain, Fatigue, Insomnia, Foggy Brain

When people finish treatment for cancer, they want to bounce back to their former vital selves as quickly as possible. But a new Northwestern Medicine study — one of the largest survivor studies ever conducted – shows many survivors still suffer moderate to severe problems with pain, fatigue, sleep, memory and concentration three to five years after treatment has ended.

Tanning beds still popular despite dangers; is sunless tanning an alternative?

A recent survey confirmed that 32% of respondents  (3800 white, non-hispanic females ages 14-22) reported using a tanning bed in the past year .   These results are pretty alarming since the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the World Health Organization’s International  panel have declared ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun and artificial light sources such as tanning beds and sun lamps, as a known carcinogen.  Studies show indoor tanning increases a person’s risk of melanoma, the most serious type of skin cancer,  by 75%.

An Update on Home Birth and Midwife Legislation

Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin recently signed into law legislation requiring health care insurance policies to cover midwifery services and home births. Supporters of the law said this law is critical in improving access to comprehensive health services for women, reducing system costs and strengthening the quality of care that mothers receive during pregnancy and childbirth.

Beware of Limitations for Breast Thermograpy

Today, June 2, 2011, the U.S.  Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned women not to substitute breast thermography for mammography to screen for breast cancer. Some health care providers are promoting breast thermography on their websites and claiming that thermography is superior to mammography as a screening method for breast cancer, because it does not require radiation exposure or breast compression.

Most U.S. Teen Pregnancies Unintended

In 2009, a total of  409,840 infants were born to 15−19 year olds, for a live birth rate of 39.1 per 1,000 women in this age group. Nearly two-thirds of births to women younger than age 18 and more than half of those among 18−19 year olds are unintended. The US teen birth rate fell by more than one-third from 1991 through 2005, but then increased by 5 percent over two consecutive years. Data for 2008 and 2009, however, indicate that the long-term downward trend has resumed. The U.S. teen pregnancy and birth, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), and abortion rates are substantially higher than those of other western industrialized nations.

Tips for Cleaning Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits and vegetables are an important part of a healthy diet.  Your local markets carry an amazing variety of fresh fruits and vegetables that are both nutritious and delicious.  Previous blogs on this site have discussed ways to reduce your risks due to agricultural toxins in pesticides.  As you enjoy fresh produce, it is also  important to handle these products safely in order to reduce the risks of foodborne illness.