Comment: Is it safe for a 2 week pregnant woman to take Zinnat? C. (USA)
Answer: Zinnat, the generic name of which is Cefuroxime belongs to a group of antibiotics called ‘cephalosporins’. These are safe to take at any stage of pregnancy including the early stages. By the way, I’m not sure I understand what you mean by “2 weeks pregnant”. Technically there is no such thing. If you mean it is two weeks since you missed your period, that is in fact a six weeks pregnancy since the counting starts from when you had your last period. Nevertheless, the advice regarding Zinnat remains unchanged.
Question: My daughter has obstetric cholestasis which is not responding well, her doctor wants to try Rifadin - is it safe? L.P. (UK)
Answer: This question does not have a straight-forward answer. Rifadin, the generic name of which is Rifampicin, is an old antibiotic that is used mainly in the treatment of tuberculosis (TB). There are no human studies but animal studies have suggested that it could have toxic effects on the fetus and because of that, the standard advice has always been to avoid use in pregnancy unless absolutely necessary. Now, the issue of obstetric cholestasis is another challenging scenario. I am assuming that your daughter has been using UCDA to try to control this condition but response has been poor. In fact, that is not unusual. UCDA is known to improve biochemical results for some patients with obstetric cholestasis. It may also improve symptoms (the generalised itching). However, not everybody who gets the treatment benefits that way. Apart from the very distressing itching associated with this condition, the main concern is the increased risk of stillbirth. With obstetric cholestasis this tends to be sudden and without warning. Significantly perhaps is the fact that, even though UCDA has been shown to improve blood (biochemical) results and even the symptoms for some patients, there is really no solid evidence that it reduces the risk of stillbirth. This is where the possibility of using additional medication comes in. Rifadin (Rifampicin) has been studied for this purpose on the back of observed benefit when used in similar liver conditions such as biliary cirrhosis and even gallstones. On this basis, it has been tried in severe cases of cholestasis in the hope that it might show similar benefits. This has been done when the pregnancy is far from Term and where delivery is judged to pose significant risk to the pre-term baby. It then becomes a question of weighing the potential benefits against the potential risk from a drug the effects of which on the fetus are largely unknown.
I know this is a long explanation but you will hopefully understand why this wasn’t a question that can be answered with a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’. My best wishes to your daughter.
Question: Hi I would like to know how much it costs to choose baby sex through IVF method which is 100% possible and how long or how complicated it is. Thanks and waits for answer. S.O. (Norway)
Answer: Choosing a baby of a particular sex via IVF is not a complicated process at all. In a nutshell, it involves the standard initial IVF process which includes stimulating the woman’s eggs, harvesting them and fertilising them using her partner’s sperm outside the womb. Then, a process of identifying the resulting embryos’ sex follows. That will put the embryos into two groups; male and female. What follows then is replacing only the embryos of the desired sex into the mother’s womb. If conception is successful, the prospective parents will be guaranteed that the baby (or babies) are of a particular gender. That is the technical aspect. The legal aspect is an entirely different matter. In the UK and many other countries, choosing the sex of the baby for non-medical reasons is strictly prohibited. It may be the case therefore that you first need to find out the legal position of what you may be thinking of pursuing where you are.
Question: Hi, I have a 6 years old female kid and I want to conceive again. Every month I am depressing when i get periods. What to do ? D. (India)
Answer: Your frustration is completely understandable. You already have a child which means yours is what is described as secondary sub-fertility. It is difficult to suggest a solution on the basis of such little information. It is not clear whether the apparent sub-fertility is due to something that may have happened to you or your partner since the birth of your daughter.
Possible causes include a pelvic infection that could have led to the damage of blockage or your fallopian tubes. On the part of your partner, any condition that could lead to reduction in the production of sperm can cause difficulty conceiving. However, most likely, nothing has really changed and there is nothing fundamentally wrong with you or your partner. It may just be the case that you just have not been able to conceive yet. To be able to get to the bottom of this, the logical thing is to see a specialist who will have the opportunity to take a full medical history, examine you and perform tests that may be deemed appropriate. There are so many factors that can cause difficulty in conceiving that I couldn’t possibly cover them all in this answer. The fact that you have already successfully conceived in the past, presumably with the same partner, means your current difficulty has a good chance of being successfully solved. My best wishes.
Breech presentation: Any alternatives to ECV?
Question: Is there anything (apart from ECV) that would help the baby into head-down position? Is staying on "all-four" help at all? Does swimming or aquagym help? or walking, etc? Thanks! R. (Romania)
Answer: I am afraid there is no evidence to back up any of the touted methods to turn a breech presenting baby into head first. However, external cephalic version (ECV) is a very safe procedure and , even though success rates are modest (roughly 50%), I would say it is the one proven method that gives an expectant mother the best chance of getting the baby into a head-first position.