Vaginal fluid transplants could cure bacterial vaginosis

Study finds new treatment for BV, which affects up to a third of reproductive-age women Transplanting vaginal fluids from one woman to another could help tackle severe cases of a common bacterial condition, a study has suggested. Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is thought to affect up to a third of women of reproductive age. It is caused when the balance of microbes in the vagina known as the vaginal microbiome becomes disturbed, with a drop in lactobacilli while other bacteria take over. The condition is not generally serious, but it can increase the risk of contracting sexually transmitted infections, and of complications for pregnant women. It can also affect self-esteem; some women develop symptoms such as fishy-smelling discharge. While BV can …

Theres a dark side to womens health apps: Menstrual surveillance

Employers and health insurers are using family-planning apps to gather intimate information about your fertility, menstrual cycle and pregnancy Sign up for the Sign up for the Week in Patriarchy, a newsletter on feminism and sexism sent every Saturday The rise of menstrual surveillance: why digital privacy is a feminist issue Your vagina has been digitized. So have your ovaries. So has your period. Over the last few years, there has been an femtech, digital tools and services centered around womens health. There are positive aspects to this, but theres also a dark side, including the rise of what has been called menstrual surveillance. Corporations are increasingly aware that female bodies are temples of lucrative information, and are exploiting this …

Death sentence for abortion? The hypocrisy of US pro-lifers is plain to see | Jill Filipovic

The Texas state legislature is debating a provision that wouldnt just outlaw abortion, but legally qualify it as homicide. The repercussions are chilling Do pro-life advocates care about life or do they care about punishment? The latest abortion debate out of Texas gives a clear answer: the goal is to hurt women, not defend life. The Texas state legislature is debating a provision that wouldnt just outlaw abortion, but legally qualify it as homicide. For context of how extreme that is, even in the United States before Roe v Wade made abortion broadly legal, the procedure was outlawed in most states but was not considered murder abortion was its own crime. Texas in 2019 wants to be even more barbaric …

The Handmaids Tale comes to life in Alabama. Women must heed the warning | Zoe Williams

The indictment of Marshae Jones for the manslaughter of her unborn child shows that misogyny is now state law, says Guardian columnist Zoe Williams Marshae Jones was five months pregnant when another woman, Ebony Jemison, shot her in the stomach, in an Alabama town called Pleasant Grove. The 27-year-old Jones survived but the foetus, hit by the bullet, did not. Jemison successfully pleaded self-defence, since her gun was drawn in the middle of a fight that Jones reportedly started and was winning according to an unnamed police source until the gun was fired. Since the shooter was exonerated, it seems odd still to be preoccupied with who started the fight. But this is one of two key elements in the …

How AI and Data-Crunching Can Reduce Preterm Births

This story is part of a week-long series on reproduction, from prenatal testing to childfree Reddit. Emily Pickett, a doula in Louisville, Kentucky, is used to hearing hard truths from expecting mothers. Her job is to guide women through pregnancy, acting as confidante and supporter; understanding their deepest stressors—an abusive partner, a struggle with drugs—is important to ensuring healthy pregnancies. In the largely poor and black neighborhoods of Louisville’s West End, where Pickett leads a nonprofit network of doulas, it’s also part of preparing women for a specific threat: giving birth too soon. Premature birth and its complications are the leading cause of death in infants. In the US, roughly one in 10 babies is born prematurely, or before 37 …

Mothers who have abortions: what to do with TVs third rail?

Most women who terminate a pregnancy are already mothers but we rarely see that on screen. Australian comedy The Letdown is the latest show to tackle the taboo We got a beautiful email from a viewer last week, says Sarah Scheller, co-creator of the ABCs The Letdown. It said, That was my scenario. I cant believe I just saw it on screen. Women who have abortions are only just now beginning to see themselves depicted on screens, but for a certain subgroup women who are already mothers when they decide to terminate the taboo is stronger than ever. Its a taboo that Schellers low-key comedy was determined to quietly break. The Letdown follows Audrey: a middle-class woman, played by Schellers …

Unproductive weekend? Well, this politician casually cycled to hospital to give birth.

Sundays are usually a lazy, uneventful affair for many of us. Not for the 42-week pregnant New Zealand Minister for Women, Julie Anne Genter, who made her way to hospital for an induction. SEE ALSO: This Instagram influencer started her own clothing line to promote body positivity That’s all very normal, except perhaps for her mode of transportation. Instead of getting in a car, she cycled to the hospital instead. “My partner and I cycled because there wasn’t enough room in the car for the support crew… but it also put me in the best possible mood!” she wrote on Instagram. A post shared by Julie Anne Genter (@julieannegenter) on Aug 18, 2018 at 3:42pm PDT Genter added in a …

States are prosecuting women in the name of ‘fetal rights’. We should all be alarmed | Moira Donegan

The indictment of Marshae Jones is part of a larger trend of states criminalizing women for unintended pregnancy outcomes In December, 28-year-old Marshae Jones saw a woman she didnt like, Ebony Jemison, in the parking lot of a Dollar General in Pleasant Grove, Alabama, and confronted her. The fight turned physical, and Jemison shot Jones, who was five months pregnant, in the stomach. Jones was rushed to a hospital. She survived, but lost her pregnancy. The fetus had been struck by a bullet. Yet a grand jury indicted Jones not Jemison for manslaughter. Under Alabama law a fetus has the same rights as a living person, and the grand jury ruled that Jones had an obligation to avoid anything that …

Can I Breastfeed in It? Why a Facebook group for new mothers is the friendliest place on the internet

From milk-proof vest tops to bridesmaid outfits, members of an online community are helping each other to find clothes that both look great and are easy to feed a baby in There are things in life you can only discover for yourself and things other people could have told you if only youhad asked. Sorting between these two categories is the odd genius, such as Natalie Halman. Three years ago, when she was 27, she launched the 34% of mothers breastfeed for the first six months, is a significant proportion of the whole community. This has happened totally organically, says Halman. The unification of breastfeeders on Facebook is quite incredible. Due to the lack of proper breastfeeding support provided by …

Unproductive weekend? Well, this politician casually cycled to hospital to give birth.

Sundays are usually a lazy, uneventful affair for many of us. Not for the 42-week pregnant New Zealand Minister for Women, Julie Anne Genter, who made her way to hospital for an induction. SEE ALSO: This Instagram influencer started her own clothing line to promote body positivity That’s all very normal, except perhaps for her mode of transportation. Instead of getting in a car, she cycled to the hospital instead. “My partner and I cycled because there wasn’t enough room in the car for the support crew… but it also put me in the best possible mood!” she wrote on Instagram. A post shared by Julie Anne Genter (@julieannegenter) on Aug 18, 2018 at 3:42pm PDT Genter added in a …

Italian women’s groups fear law change will hurt domestic violence victims

Italys parental alienation proposal could be exploited by men if it becomes law, say women Womens associations fear legal changes by Italys populist government could have severe consequences for victims of domestic abuse. The overriding worry is a proposal in the joint contract of the anti-establishment Five Star Movement (M5S) and far-right League combating what it describes as the serious phenomenon of parental alienation, whereby one parent manipulates their child to reject the other. Lella Palladino, the president of D.i.Re has started a petition to block the legislation, which was drafted by League senator Simone Pillon and began its passage through parliament last week. No more forfeit allowances or ideological feminist battles against men, were thinking only of the child, …