Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Medical News Flashes: Home Birth & Breastfeeding

The following two articles may be of interest:

On the My Best Birth site, Ricki Lake draws attention to a new study just out in the Canadian Medical Association Journal on the safety of home birth versus hospital birth. In brief, this article paints an encouraging picture of home birth that is worth a look.

Also -

Today the BBC reports findings of a BJOG study that indicates drugs oxytocin and/or ergometrine, commonly used to treat bleeding after birth, may impede a woman's ability to breastfeed her baby. The Swansea University team that carried out the study also found that high doses of painkilling drugs have a similar effect.

With healthy and not so healthy debate raging around breast versus bottle feeding (this weekend a friend just told us a funny story about bottle milk being referred to as "the devil's milk"), this study promises to add more fuel to the fire around factors that affect a woman's ability to breastfeed.

Though experts warn that no firm conclusions can be drawn at this stage, I think it's important that pregnant women are better informed about the about the associated risks of medications used during labour and birth. In the BBC article, Rosemary Dodds, NCT policy research officer suggests that "women at low risk of bleeding may not need to take these drugs."
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