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You are here : 3-RX.com > Home > Gender: FemaleSexual Health


Sexual Health

Sexual trauma afflicts 15 percent of U.S. vets

Sexual HealthOct 28 08

Nearly 15 percent of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans seeking medical care from the U.S. Veterans Affairs Department have suffered sexual trauma, from harassment to rape, researchers reported on Tuesday.

And these veterans were 1.5 times as likely as other veterans to need mental health services, the report from the VA found.

“We are, in fact, detecting men and women who seem to have a significant need for mental health services,” said Rachel Kimerling of the National Center for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System in California.

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Sexual difficulties common after major trauma

Sexual Health • • TraumaOct 21 08

Nearly one third of people who suffer severe injuries are likely to have sexual problems a year later, according to findings recently presented at the meeting of the American College of Surgeons.

“Previous studies have shown that men and women who sustain pelvic fractures and spinal cord injuries are at risk for sexual dysfunction. However, no studies have looked at the broad population of patients who sustained other injuries,” Dr. Mathew D. Sorensen, from the University of Washington, Seattle, told Reuters Health.

His team theorized that just sustaining a severe injury might bring on sexual problems. “This might be due to physical or emotional limitations, since patients who sustain severe injuries have persistent issues even one year after their injury.”

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Early exposure to drugs, alcohol creates lifetime of health risk

Pregnancy • • Sexual HealthOct 16 08

People who began drinking and using marijuana regularly prior to their 15th birthday face a higher risk of early pregnancy, as well as a pattern of school failure, substance dependence, sexually-transmitted disease and criminal convictions that lasts into their 30s.

A study published online by the journal Psychological Science has been able to sort out for the first time the difficult question of whether it’s bad kids who do drugs, or doing drugs that makes kids bad.

The answer is both, said Duke University psychologist Avshalom Caspi, who co-authored the report with his wife and colleague Terrie Moffitt. They are part of a team of researchers from the U.S., Britain and New Zealand that analyzed data tracking the health of nearly 1,000 New Zealand residents from birth through age 32.

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Online-mediated syphilis testing shows promise

Sexual HealthSep 17 08

The results of a study suggest that online-mediated syphilis testing is helpful in detecting syphilis in gay men.

The Internet has “emerged as a medium where people can find information on sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) or any other medical topic,” Rik H. Koekenbier, of GGD Amsterdam, the Netherlands, noted in an interview with Reuters Health. “With interventions like ours, men can take direct action to address their health concerns and in this way participate in their own wellness.”

Between 1998 and 2004, the annual number of infectious syphilis cases in Amsterdam increased from 35 to 240, Koekenbier and colleagues point out in the journal Sexually Transmitted Diseases. In 2004, most of the new infections (84 percent) were in men who have sex with men.

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Condom ring-tone a hit in India

Public Health • • Sexual HealthSep 12 08

A ring-tone that sings “condom, condom, condom” has attracted over 270,000 downloads since its launch last month and has spread the message of safe sex to many more mobile phone users in India and abroad.

The innovative “Condom a Capella” ring-tone that has the word “condom” sung in many overlapping melodies is the work of an Indian duo, Rupert Fernandes and Vijay Prakash. The website http://www.condomcondom.org, where the ring-tone can be heard, has had over 2 million hits.

The campaign has been produced by the BBC World Service trust in India and aims to target the increasing number of India’s mobile phone users, presently estimated at over 250 million.

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Male infertility fix works for men over 40

Sexual Health • • Urine ProblemsAug 21 08

A varicocele, an enlargement of veins in the scrotum, can impair a man’s fertility. Fortunately, surgery can correct the problem, and now a new study shows the procedure is just as effective for older men as it is for younger men.

“Older men (in the age range of 35-45) with varicocele do benefit from varicocele repair,” Dr. Armand Zini told Reuters Health, “particularly those men with secondary infertility”—i.e., infertility resulting from the varicocele.

Zini from McGill University in Montreal, Canada and his colleagues investigated the influence of age on pregnancy rates among partners of men who had undergone varicocele repair, comparing outcomes for men older and younger than 40 years.

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A Young Woman’s Battle With HIV

AIDS/HIV • • Sexual HealthAug 21 08

When Tennessee native Marvelyn Brown was diagnosed with HIV at age 19, she didn’t realize that HIV could be transmitted through heterosexual contact. She was hospitalized with pneumonia, and doctors discovered she had HIV during a battery of tests, a mere three weeks after she had been infected. By writing her new autobiography, The Naked Truth: Young, Beautiful, and (HIV) Positive, the now 24-year-old says she tries to raise awareness among young people of HIV/AIDS and how it’s transmitted.

Since her diagnosis, Brown has toured the country providing HIV education and has appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show and America’s Next Top Model. On her blog, she says that she persists in promoting HIV awareness despite all the flak she takes from people who believe she is “glamorizing” HIV/AIDS. “I contracted a 100% PREVENTABLE disease, people, which…is my message, not how glamorous I look doing it,” she wrote in a recent blog posting. “Bottom line, HIV sucks, I swear.”

A former high school track and basketball player, Brown worked and partied hard after high school, she says, but didn’t consider herself to be in a high-risk group for HIV.

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Soy-based foods may lower sperm count: study

Food & Nutrition • • Gender: Male • • Sexual HealthJul 24 08

Eating a half serving a day of soy-based foods could be enough to significantly lower a man’s sperm count, U.S. researchers said on Wednesday.

The study is the largest in humans to look at the relationship between semen quality and a plant form of the female sex hormone estrogen known as phytoestrogen, which is plentiful in soy-rich foods.

“What we found was men that consume the highest amounts of soy foods in this study had a lower sperm concentration compared to those who did not consume soy foods,” said Dr. Jorge Chavarro of the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, whose study appears in the journal Human Reproduction.

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Mate or hibernate? That’s the question worm pheromones answer

Endocrinology • • Sexual HealthJul 24 08

If worms could talk, they might tell potential suitors, “I like the way you wriggle,” complete with that telltale come slither look. But worms send their valentines via signals known as pheromones, a complex chemical code researchers are now cracking, according to a study published Wednesday (July 23) in the journal Nature.

Scientists from the University of Florida, Cornell University, the California Institute of Technology and the U.S. Department of Agriculture have discovered the first mating pheromone in one of science’s most well-studied research subjects, the tiny worm Caenorhabditis elegans. But perhaps even more interesting is what the newly discovered pheromone also directs worms to do — hibernate.

At lower levels, the pheromone signals the male C. elegans to mate with its partner. But when the worm population grows and the food supply dwindles, the chemical signal increases and the cue changes from mate to hibernate. This discovery could help researchers find ways to combat more harmful worms that destroy crops and provide clues for scientists studying similar parasite worms, said Arthur Edison, Ph.D., a UF associate professor of biochemistry and molecular biology in the College of Medicine and one of the study’s senior authors.

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Study Links Herpes with Widespread Neuropathic Pain

Neurology • • Pain • • Sexual HealthJul 21 08

Reactivation of genital herpes is linked in some cases with the emergence of widespread neuropathic pain, according to a Finnish study reported in The Journal of Pain.

In the clinic at the University of Helsinki, 17 patients were examined who presented widespread chronic pain with no visible lesions in brain magnetic imaging. Because the majority had herpes simplex virus (HSV) infections, the researchers studied a possible association between herpes and neuropathic pain.

They hypothesized that in HSV-positive patients, the active virus may alter pain processing at different levels of the central nervous system (CNS).

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As Viagra Controversy Heats Up on Campaign Trail, Real Issue May be Sexual Inequality Says Expert

Sexual HealthJul 14 08

Republican Sen. John McCain resisted being dragged into a discussion last week about insurance companies that will cover erectile dysfunction drugs but not birth control products.

“I certainly do not want to discuss that issue,” the presidential candidate said when a reporter asked him about it on his campaign bus, the “Straight Talk Express.” Carly Fiorina, a top McCain supporter, stirred talk about the topic at a recent Washington breakfast with reporters. The former Hewlett-Packard chief executive discussing consumer-driven health insurance, mentioned something “I’ve been hearing a lot about from women: There are many health insurance plans that will cover Viagra but won’t cover birth-control medication. Those women would like a choice.”

“The underlying problem here really may be that there is no female equivalent of Viagra, so women may be using birth control as the closest comparison, “ says Stephen M. Simes, CEO of BioSante Pharmaceuticals. “It is shocking to some that 10 years after Viagra’s introduction, there is currently no FDA approved product to treat women who suffer from low sex drive, which may affect as many as 30-40% of American women. This is the real inequality that should be addressed. Women also would like and are entitled to a choice just like men have had for 10 years.”

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New study points to agriculture in frog sexual abnormalities

Sexual HealthJul 04 08

A farm irrigation canal would seem a healthier place for toads than a ditch by a supermarket parking lot.

But University of Florida scientists have found the opposite is true. In a study with wide implications for a longstanding debate over whether agricultural chemicals pose a threat to amphibians, UF zoologists have found that toads in suburban areas are less likely to suffer from reproductive system abnormalities than toads near farms – where some had both testes and ovaries.

“As you increase agriculture,” said Lou Guillette, a distinguished professor of zoology, “you have an increasing number of abnormalities.”

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Tap water chemicals not linked to penis defect

Dieting • • Sexual Health • • Urine ProblemsJun 26 08

Though some research has linked chemicals in chlorinated tap water to the risk of birth defects, a new study finds no strong evidence that the chemicals contribute to a common birth defect of the penis.

The defect, known as hypospadias, occurs when the urinary outlet develops on the underside of the penis rather than at the tip. Genetics are thought to play a large role in hypospadias risk, but the other potential causes are not fully understood.

Some past studies have suggested that certain chemicals in tap water—byproducts of the chlorination process used to kill disease-causing pathogens—may contribute to the risk of birth defects and miscarriage. Other studies, though, have found no such links.

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Many may ‘trust’ their partner is a low STD risk

Sexual HealthJun 26 08

Too many people may consider themselves at low risk of sexually transmitted diseases simply because they trust their partner, a new study suggests.

The study of patients at an STD clinic found that many people relied on subjective measures in judging their partner’s “safety”—such as how long they had known the partner or how intelligent or well-educated he or she was.

The findings suggest that when people feel they “just know” their partner, they may consider their STD risk to be low even in the absence of any STD/HIV testing, the researchers report in the journal Sexually Transmitted Diseases.

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Promoting sexual and reproductive rights

Fertility and pregnancy • • Sexual HealthJun 25 08

Elsevier announced today Reproductive Health Matters’ May 2008 issue on the theme of “Conflict and Crisis Settings: Promoting Sexual and Reproductive rights”. Under conditions of global economic and ecological crisis as well as rampant militarism, growing numbers of refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) find themselves stripped of ordinary rights or even ‘the right to have rights’. By the end of 2006, the United Nations High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR) estimated that nearly 33 million people worldwide qualified for humanitarian assistance – representing an increase of 56% from 2005. The great majority of these were IDPs who do not qualify for the rights and benefits conferred by refugee status.

Disaster has a strongly gendered dimension related to sexual and reproductive health. Camps and shelters which are intended to provide refuge often become places of violence and dehumanisation, especially for women and girls. This issue of Reproductive Health Matters attests to the great distance that remains between the official recognition of the sexual and reproductive rights of IDPs and refugees and their safeguarding on the ground.

The long-term duration of armed conflict in many countries means that IDPs and refugees may find themselves displaced for years or even decades. Conditions of unequal power, dependency, crowding, sub-standard housing and lack of privacy make rape and abuse a constant threat.

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