Internet-based study aims to help infertile couples

February 10th, 2014 in PRESTO News.

Infertility is among the most painful problems a couple can face, with emotional repercussions that can last for years—or a lifetime. The causes are often hard to pinpoint and it can be hard to treat.

Do women who take antidepressants have a harder time getting pregnant? Do men who carry their cell phones in their pants’ pockets have an increased risk of infertility?

Those are among the questions that researchers from the School of Public Health and the Slone Epidemiology Center are probing in the recently launched PRESTO (Pregnancy Study Online) project—the largest internet-based study of fertility in the United States.

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Study finds decreased life expectancy for multiple sclerosis patients

January 24th, 2014 in Uncategorized.

The first large scale study in the U.S. on the mortality of patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) has been published and provides new information about the life expectancy of people with the disease. The study appears in the journal Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders.

Read more at Medical Xpress

Researchers from the Slone Epidemiology Center at Boston University took the first large scale study in the United States regarding mortality and a chronic disease of the central nervous system, multiple sclerosis (MS).  At this time, there are roughly 250,000 to 350,000 patients living with MS in the United States. That’s approximately one in 1,000, according to background information from the study.  As the degenerative phase affects the majority of patients, despite disease modifying-agents to reduce the activity of the health issue, many must face the possibility of a decreased life span due to the health problem.

Read more at Science World Report

Depressive symptoms linked to adult-onset asthma in African-American women

January 24th, 2014 in Black Women's Health Study News.

According to a new study from the Slone Epidemiology Center at Boston University, African-American women who reported high levels of depressive symptoms had a greater likelihood of adult-onset asthma compared to women who reported fewer depressive symptoms.

Read more at Medical Xpress

PRESTO (Pregnancy Study Online)

December 20th, 2013 in PRESTO News.

Over the last few decades, fertility rates in MA have been trending downwards. Fertility rates in MA are 16% lower than the national average. But why?

Lexi Kriss, Study Coordinator for PRESTO, has more on fertility and what PRESTO is doing to gather information in MA.

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What burgers might have to do with African American women’s obesity risk

December 16th, 2013 in Black Women's Health Study News.

Researchers from the Slone Epidemiology Center at Boston University found an association between eating burgers from restaurants twice a week or more and having a 26 percent higher risk of becoming obese over an approximately 15-year period, among African American women.

Read more at The Huffington Post

Given risks of statins, guidelines need to be on target

November 25th, 2013 in Uncategorized.

The new guidelines for use of statins could result in millions more users (“Panel recommends far wider use of cholesterol drugs,” Page A1, Nov. 13). However, thanks to Dr. Paul Ridker, a cardiologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Nancy Cook, a biostatistician at Brigham, the public has learned that the risk calculator for cardiovascular disease suggested by the American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology overestimates risk (“Heart doctors at odds on risk formula,” Page A1, Nov. 19). This would result in millions being wrongly considered to meet the new guideline for statin use.

Read more at The Boston Globe

Reassuring news about flu vaccine safety in pregnancy

September 25th, 2013 in Pregnancy Health Interview Study News.

A new study has found “reassuring” evidence that H1N1 flu vaccine is safe during pregnancy.  The national study was launched shortly after the H1N1 outbreak in 2009 and was led by Boston University and UC San Diego in collaboration with the American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology.

Read more at CBS Boston

Researchers from the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and Boston University, in collaboration with the American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI), have found evidence of the H1N1 influenza vaccine’s safety during pregnancy. The national study, which was launched shortly after the H1N1 influenza outbreak of 2009, is summarized in two companion papers published online on September 19 in the journal Vaccine.

Read more at UC San Diego Health System

Some painkillers tied to certain birth defects in study

September 12th, 2013 in Pregnancy Health Interview Study News.

Women taking prescription painkillers such as Oxycontin, Vicodin and Percocet early in pregnancy are twice as likely to give birth to babies with devastating neural tube defects such as spina bifida, a new study suggests.

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Overall and central obesity linked to delayed conception in African-American women, according to BU researchers

September 3rd, 2013 in Black Women's Health Study News.

In a first of its kind study, researchers from the Slone Epidemiology Center at Boston University found that African-American women who were overweight or obese had a greater risk of delayed conception and infertility when compared with women who were of normal weight. In addition, women who had larger waist circumferences and greater waist-to-hip ratios (i.e., apple-shaped women) had lower fertility. These findings of time to pregnancy (TTP) are published online in Human Reproduction.

Read more at Boston University Medical Campus

Racism linked to asthma risk for black women

August 22nd, 2013 in Black Women's Health Study News.

“Racism is a significant stressor in the lives of African-American women, and our results contribute to a growing body of evidence indicating that experiences of racism can have adverse effects on health,” says Patricia Coogan.