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Society of Maternal-Fetal Medicine, Feb. 11-16, 2013

Last Updated: February 20, 2013.

The Society of Maternal-Fetal Medicine's 33rd Annual Meeting: The Pregnancy Meeting

The annual meeting of the Society of Maternal-Fetal Medicine was held from Feb. 11 to 16 in San Francisco and attracted approximately 2,000 participants from around the world, including obstetricians/gynecologists and other clinical practitioners who specialize in maternal-fetal medicine. The conference highlighted recent advances in maternal-fetal medicine, with presentations and abstracts focusing on reducing high-risk pregnancy complications through pregnancy assessment and management.

In one study, Andrea Edlow, M.D., of the Tufts Medical Center in Boston, and colleagues compared gene fragments in amniotic fluid from eight obese and eight lean women in the second trimester of pregnancy. The investigators found that fetuses of obese pregnant women expressed different genes than fetuses of lean women.

"The pattern of gene expression suggests abnormal brain development in fetuses of obese women. Specifically, fetuses of obese women may have decreased programmed cell death, a step that is required for normal brain development," Edlow said. "Maternal obesity may have an effect on fetal brain development as early as the second trimester. We plan to explore these preliminary findings in an animal model."

Abstract No. 37

In the Twin Birth Study, Jon Barrett, M.D., of the University of Toronto, and colleagues found that planned vaginal birth is as safe for twins as planned cesarean section as long as the first baby is head first. The researchers found no significant differences between outcomes of twin births via planned vaginal delivery and those via planned cesarean delivery.

"We need to investigate other areas where cesarean section is performed to ensure that it is the best plan for mothers and babies," Barrett said.

Abstract No. 7

In another study, Laura Vricella, M.D., of the MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland, and colleagues found that 31 percent of pregnant and reproductive age women with obstructive sleep apnea and cardiopulmonary symptoms had moderate to severe abnormalities on echocardiogram.

"We feel that this study provides the groundwork for future prospective studies to better understand the relationship between cardiovascular disease in reproductive age and pregnant women," Vricella said.

Abstract No. 38

Caroline Maltepe, M.D., of the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, and colleagues found that preemptive Diclectin treatment (delayed release combination of 10 mg pyridoxine and 10 mg doxylamine) prevented severe nausea and vomiting of pregnancy (NVP) from recurring in a subsequent pregnancy for women who had experienced severe NVP and/or hyperemesis gravidarum (HG) in their previous pregnancy.

"There was a significant reduction of HG with preemptive Diclectin treatment (43 percent in the preemptive group compared to 17 percent in the control group)," Maltepe said. "There was a 70 percent reduction of cases with moderate-severe NVP (pregnancy-unique quantification of emesis and nausea [PUQE], ≥11) in the first three weeks of NVP in the preemptive group (P < 0.04)."

The investigators also found a significant negative correlation between peak PUQE and well-being scores as well as an earlier resolution of NVP symptoms in the preemptive group (mean gestational age of 26 weeks versus 33 weeks for control group).

Abstract No. 31

SMFM: 17P Doesn't Prevent Preterm Labor in Twin Births

FRIDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- 17 alpha-hydroxyprogesterone caproate (17P) is ineffective in preventing preterm delivery in women with a short cervix asymptomatically carrying twins, and may actually be harmful, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine, held from Feb. 11 to 16 in San Francisco.

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