Women in the U.S. are having more babies — exactly 3,985,924 last year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Preliminary data show that birth rates in the U.S. were up by 1 percent last year from 2013. It’s the first increase in seven years.
But teenagers aren’t having as many babies. The birth rate in that group dropped by 9 percent in 2014 compared with 2013. For context, teen births have been on the decline since 1991.
The CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics published the data Wednesday. The findings are based on nearly all births in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
Among the findings in the report:
- The birth rate for Asians rose 6 percent, and 1 percent, respectively, for whites, blacks and Hispanics. The rate of Native American births dropped by 2 percent.
- The rate of unmarried women who gave birth declined by 1 percent.
- Women in their 30s and 40s continue to have more children, fueling the rise in the birth rate last year.
One of the authors of the report, Brady Hamilton of the National Center for Health Statistics, says the increase in the number of births overall was somewhat of a surprise.
Pregnant women with hepatitis B may not have to worry that they will pass on the virus to their babies thanks to new research that found the antiviral drug telbibudine prevents the passage of the virus (HBV) to baby.
The study, which is published in the Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, was conducted on 450 HBV-positive pregnant women in their second or third trimester who had a significant amount of the HBV virus in their blood. Of those women, 279 received 600mg of telbivudine daily, and the remaining 171 refused to take the medicine and were used as controls.
When scientists examined their babies six months after born, they found that none of the infants whose mothers were given telbivudine tested positive for HBV, compared to 14.7 percent of infants in the control group.
“If we are to decrease the global burden of hepatitis B, we need to start by addressing mother-to-infant transmission, which is the primary pathway of HBV infection,” study author Yuming Wang from Institute for Infectious Diseases at Southwest Hospital in Chongqing, China said in a release about the findings. “We found that telbivudine not only eliminated vertical transmission of HBV from pregnant women to theirs infants, but that it is also safe and well tolerated by women and infants.”
Access the complete study at the Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, the official clinical practice journal of the American Gastroenterological Association, HERE.
h/t Medical Express