News of Interest for Late-in-Life Moms July 7, 2008
News to know:
Couples trying to have a baby when the man is over 40 will have more difficulty conceiving than if he is younger, according to researchers.
The data, presented at the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology conference, provides evidence for a strong paternal effect on IUI (intrauterine insemination) outcome on both pregnancy and miscarriage rates. The researchers do not know exactly why,
but said a link between a man's age and DNA decay in sperm that causes it to fragment could be a likely explanation.
Cholesterol drugs urged for some 8-year-olds
The American Academy of Pediatrics is recommending that some children as young as 8 be given cholesterol-fighting drugs to ward off future heart problems.
The new advice is based on mounting evidence showing that damage leading to heart disease, the nation's leading killer, begins early in life.
Haywire brain chemical linked to SIDS
There is new evidence that the brain chemical best known for regulating mood also plays a role in the mystifying killer of seemingly healthy babies — sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
Experts suspect that an imbalance in serotonin might be behind SIDS. Italian researchers engineered mice born with serotonin that goes haywire — and found the brain abnormality is enough to spur sudden death, in ways that mesh with other clues from human babies.
Baby's temperament can predict later behavior
Research suggests both parents' interactions with their baby during the first year of life and the baby's natural temperament can predict the odds of behavior problems later on.
The study, which followed nearly 1,900 children from infancy up to age 13, had the following findings:
- Children whose mothers gave them plenty of intellectual stimulation in the first year of life — reading to them, talking to them and taking them out of the house — were less likely to have serious behavioral problems.
- The odds of behavior problems were also linked to certain measures of the children's temperament during infancy, such as how "fussy" they were, or whether they had a generally happy or more moody disposition.