The search for love and happiness often takes strategy and planning for many women at different stages of their lives, and often runs the gamut, typically from bars to boyfriends to betrothal to babies.
And on that road to bliss and fulfillment, a girl needs to employ every advantage available to her to maximize her success.
Well, Israeli researchers from Tel Aviv University are on our side at every phase, whether it’s upping our chances of conceiving, encouraging older moms to conceive, or protecting us from unscrupulous predators that may have less-than-honorable intentions.
Two promising studies, one on fertility in older women, and one on low-fertility women, should cheer up all women who want to conceive.
Professor Yariv Yogev of Tel Aviv University’s Sackler School of Medicine and a gynecologist/obstetrician at the Rabin Medical Center Hospital for Women found that women over 45 who want a child have a lot to be hopeful about.
In 2010, Yogev’s team gathered data from over 200 births in their clinic — 177 women were over the age of 45 and 20 were over 50. He documented their adverse health effects and those of their babies.
“I’d been an attending physician in a delivery ward to a woman over 60 who had twins,” Yogev said. “I wanted to know if it’s ethical to treat older women like this — I wanted to know if it’s safe for both mother and child.”
Pregnant women over 40 have a 300 percent greater chance of developing gestational diabetes and high blood pressure, Yogev explained. They also have higher rates of preterm births and are prone to developing placenta previa, a condition where the placenta blocks the birth canal opening.
Older mothers are 6 percent more likely to develop high blood pressure, generally carry the fetus for 37 weeks rather than the average of 40, and experience severe bleeding post-birth more often, said Yogev.
But he also found that the newborns overcame health risks such as metabolic problems. His findings were published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology.
“The babies themselves overcame the risks in the short term,” Yogev said.
More good news about fertility came out of another smaller but promising 2010 study by Tel Aviv University’s Sackler Faculty of Medicine professor Adrian Shulman. He is a gynecologist, and the director of the IVF unit in the Obstetrics and Gynecology Department at Meir Medical Center in Kfar Saba.
Over a 40-day period before starting fertility treatment, Shulman gave half of the 20 fertility-challenged women in his study a daily 75-milligram dose of the over-the-counter dietary supplement DHEA, typically used as an anti-aging supplement.
He found that the supplemented women were three times more likely to conceive, in comparison to the infertile women who didn’t take it. He also found they had healthier pregnancies and deliveries.
The study was published in the journal of the Israeli Fertility Association, AYALA.
“In the DHEA group, there was a 23 percent live birth rate as opposed to a 4 percent rate in the control group,” reported Shulman. “Of the pregnancies in the DHEA group, all but one ended in healthy deliveries.”
Shulman hopes that further studies will shed light on how DHEA works, suspecting that it might improve the quality of a woman’s eggs or follicles.
So what have Israeli researchers done for the woman who just wants to meet new people in a nightclub, a party, or at a restaurant bar?
Well, Professor Fernando Patolsky and Dr. Michael Ioffe of Tel Aviv University’s Sackler Faculty of Exact Sciences are looking for investors to help them market their newly patented pen-sized, date-rape drug detection device. They are developing a portable version for women everywhere to use.
Designed to detect the two most common date rape drugs, GHB and ketamine, these and other club drugs like Rohypnol are easily slipped into the drinks of unsuspecting women, leaving them barely conscious after a short period of time without any memory of what happened to them under the drug’s influence. These drugs are tasteless and odorless, and are undetectable in the victim shortly after its ingestion, making prosecution for sexual assault — the most common use for the drug by perpetrators — nearly impossible.
In test results, the invention detected these drugs with 100 percent accuracy. Dipped discreetly into a drink, it lasts two or three times, and is re-useable with the insertion of a new cartridge that would cost under a dollar.
The system debuted at the Nano Conference 2011 in Israel.