Our Bodies, Our Blog

Learn Read About Inequities in Breast Cancer: Race and Place Matter

By Christine Cupaiuolo |

is offering a free, one-hour webinar examining the racial and socio-economic factors that influence the health of individuals and communities.

Titled “Inequities in Breast Cancer: Race and Place Matter,” the webinar will take place Tuesday, May 15, at 2 p.m. PDT/5 p.m. EST () and again on Wednesday, May 16, at 11 a.m. PDT/2 p.m. EST ().

“Inequities in breast cancer risk and outcomes vary among different racial and ethnic communities and … Read

What Mothers Really Want: Right to Care for Family Members and Selves

By My |

by Ellen Bravo

My favorite Mother’s day gifts from my sons were their original stories, songs and poems. But what I needed when they were infants and toddlers was something children can’t deliver: affordable time off when they were born and when they were sick.

So for all those candidates and elected officials interested in the women’s vote and eager to prove their support for motherhood and families, here’s a sampling of what mothers want and need, not just one day a year but every day:

The right … Read

New CDC Report Finds Trends Toward Read, Better Contraceptive Use Among Sexually Active Teen Girls

By Rachel Walden |

The CDC recently released a report on in the United States. The agency used data from the National Survey of Family Growth for 1995, 2002, and 2006-2010 to look at sexual activity and birth control use among girls ages 15-19.

The percentage of teen girls who reported that they had never had vaginal intercourse rose from 48.9% in 1995 to 56.7% in the 2006-2010 period.

Of the girls who had had sex in the month before … Read

Progesterone-Alone for Hot Flashes and Night Sweats?

By Rachel Walden |

Many women going through perimenopause and in menopause either don’t have have flashes and night sweats that bother them or are able to ease them with self-help approaches.  However, between 7 and 9 percent of women have symptoms severe enough to interfere with their quality of life.

In the past, the primary treatment for hot flashes and night sweats (called vasomotor symptoms) was estrogen--progestin or estrogen-alone hormone therapy—both effective therapies. But as the (WHI) trials demonstrated, these hormone regimens unfortunately increase the … Read

Canadian Funding of Women’s Health Research Cut

By Rachel Walden |

While there has been considerable attention in the United States to political moves intended to reduce access to women’s health services, our neighbors to the north are also experiencing conservative-led cuts that affect women’s health. Six Canadian organizations focused on research and communication in women’s health have been told that their funding will be cut off next spring.

The six organizations forming the Women’s Health Contribution Program : the women’s health implications of the federal government’s regulation of toxic chemicals; the hyper-sexualization … Read

What Do We Know About Low Doses of Chemicals and Our Health?

By Rachel Walden |

Researchers from a number of universities and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences recently published in the journal Endocrine Reviews that explores how much exposure to certain chemicals is needed to cause harm, and suggests that “fundamental changes in chemical testing and safety determination are needed to protect human health.”

The researchers, led by Laura Vandenberg, looked at endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) – chemicals like BPA and DES that interfere with the body’s hormone systems. In their review, they explore complex issues … Read

Invasive Strip Searches Halted at Michigan Women’s Prison

By Rachel Walden |

[Note: this post and the linked materials contain graphic discussion of sexual abuse, rape, and prison genital searches.]

A Michigan women’s prison that was practicing a particularly degrading type of visual body cavity search on prisoners has agreed to stop the searches.

Earlier this month, the ACLU sent a to the Michigan Department of Corrections demanding that they end the practice of performing spread-labia vaginal searches at the Women’s Huron Valley Correctional Facility.  During such searches, women were required to sit on a chair … Read

Sign on to Support Native American Women’s Access to Emergency Contraception

By Rachel Walden |

Native American women are subjected to much higher levels of sexual violence than other women in the United States; the Department of Justice estimates that read than 1 in 3 Native American women will be raped in their lifetime, and they are often .

According to a , Native American women are also denied access to emergency contraception through the Indian Health Service (IHS). The report, from the , includes the … Read

DES Action Collecting Information on Health Issues in People Exposed to DES

By Rachel Walden |

, an organization that provides information, education, and support related to DES exposure, is conducting a health history survey to learn read about the health issues faced by women who took DES and the daughters and granddaughters and sons and grandsons of those women.

DES () is a drug that used to be prescribed to women to prevent miscarriages and preterm births, and is to increase the risk of certain cancers and other adverse effects in the sons … Read

Breastfeeding in African American Communities

By Rachel Walden |

Shafia Monroe of the was recently interviewed for a nice piece in The Skanner on the topic of . Currently, black women start and continue breastfeeding at than other measured races/ethnicities. According to the CDC, rates are:

Breastfeeds Intitially
Still Breastfeeding at 6 months
Still Breastfeeding at 1 Year

American Indian/Alaska Native
69.8%
37.1%
19.4%

Asian or Pacific Islander
80.9%
52.4%
29.7%

Black (non-Hispanic)
54.4%
26.6%
11.7%

Hispanic
80.4%
45.1%
24.0%

White (non-Hispanic)
74.3%
43.2%
21.4%

In the interview, Monroe talks about health benefits of breastfeeding, notes the lower breastfeeding … Read