Top women's health stories of 2020: Unnecessary Pap tests, birth control access and more
Healio Primary Care has compiled a list of the most popular stories on women’s health in 2020, leading with a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine that found most Pap tests and pelvic exams in women aged 15 to 20 years may have been unnecessary.
Other top stories from the year include expert responses to a Supreme Court ruling on birth control access, precautions that pregnant women should take to protect them from COVID-19, and the public health challenge stemming from a potential OB-GYN shortage.
Most Pap tests, pelvic exams potentially unnecessary in young women
Millions of women aged 15 to 20 years old in the United States may have received unnecessary Pap tests or bimanual pelvic exams in recent years, according to a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine. Read more.
Doctors dismayed over Supreme Court ruling restricting birth control access
Women’s health advocates discussed the potential health consequences of a Supreme Court decision to remand a case providing women with free contraception access back to a lower court. Read more.
OB-GYNs: Despite low risk, take steps to protect pregnant women from COVID-19
WHO, CDC and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists have all issued recommendations to health care professionals for the treatment of pregnant women during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more.
Potential OB-GYN shortfall in US presents serious public health challenge
Researchers found that 35% of OB-GYNs across the U.S. are aged 55 years or older, but only 19% of OB-GYNs are aged younger than 40 years — findings that point to a potential shortage of these physicians in the coming years. Read more.
FDA approves Twirla contraceptive patch
The FDA approved Twirla (Agile Therapeutics), a weekly contraceptive patch containing 30 mcg ethinyl estradiol and 120 mcg levonorgestrel, for women of reproductive age with a BMI less than 30 kg/m2 and for whom a combined hormonal contraceptive is appropriate, its manufacturer announced in a press release. Read more.
No caffeine consumption safe in pregnancy, study finds
No amount of caffeine consumption is safe during pregnancy, according to research published in the BMJ Evidence-Based Medicine. Read more.
Q&A: How the COVID-19 pandemic affects women’s health
During the COVID-19 pandemic, physicians across the United States have reported seeing fewer patients, who are fearful of presenting to the office due to the virus. Read more.
FDA clears device for postpartum bleeding
The FDA recently granted 510(k) clearance for Jada System (Alydia Health), a device its manufacturer said “rapidly controls and treats postpartum hemorrhage and abnormal postpartum uterine bleeding.” Read more.
Data do not support ’mommy drinking’ concerns
Although binge drinking increased among mothers in the United States from 2006 to 2018, the increase was greater among women without children, according to a study published in PLoS Medicine. Read more.
Risk for hypertensive disorders during pregnancy varies by season
Women who conceive in the spring and summer may have increased risk for developing preeclampsia and gestational hypertension, according to research published in Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica. Read more.