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1.  Differentiation Between Women With Vulvovaginal Symptoms Who are Positive or Negative for Candida Species by Culture 
Objective: To investigate whether clinical criteria could differentiate between women with vulvovaginitis who were culture positive or negative for vaginal Candida species.
Methods: Vulvovaginal specimens were obtained from 501 women with a vaginal discharge and/or pruritis. Clinical information and wet mount microscopy findings were obtained. All specimens were sent to a central laboratory for species identification.
Results: A positive culture for Candida species was obtained from 364 (72.7%) of the specimens. C. albicans was identified in 86.4% of the positive cultures, followed by C. glabrata in 4.5%, C. parapsilosis in 3.9%, C. tropicalis in 2.7% and other Candida species in 1.4%.Women with a positive Candida culture had an increased utilization of oral contraceptives (26.1% vs. 16.8%, p = 0.02) and antibiotics (8.2% vs. 0.7%, p = 0.001), and were more likely to be pregnant (9.1% vs. 3.6%, p = 0.04) than the culture-negative women. Dyspareunia was more frequent in women without Candida (38.0% vs. 28.3%, p = 0.03) while vaginal erythema (p = 0.01) was more common in women with a positive Candida culture.
Conclusions: Although quantitative differences were observed, the presence of vaginal Candida vulvovaginitis cannot be definitively identified by clinical criteria.
PMCID: PMC1784657  PMID: 11916179
3.  Ethical Dimensions of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection During Pregnancy 
Physicians encounter complex and sensitive ethical challenges in the medical care of pregnant women with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. This paper identifies those ethical challenges and provides concrete clinical guidance for how they should be addressed in obstetric care. The paper begins with a brief historical review, to highlight and to call into question the civil rights model of the ethics of HIV infection that has dominated the literature, clinical practice, and public policy. The authors propose an alternative ethical framework. This framework begins by underscoring the public health obligations of both physicians and pregnant women with HIV infection. The framework is based on a clinical ethics that appeals to both beneficence-based and autonomy-based obligations of the physician to the pregnant woman and the beneficence-based obligations of both the physician and the pregnant woman to the fetal patient. This framework is then deployed in a clinical ethical analysis of termination of pregnancy and contraception, partner notification, disclosure and confidentiality of her serostatus by the patient to the health care team, disclosure and confidentiality of her serostatus to other health care professionals, prevention of vertical transmission, and advance directives.
PMCID: PMC2364565  PMID: 18476174
4.  Prevention of Infection in Pregnancy 
We believe the prevention of infection-related adverse pregnancy outcome is the most important focus for obstetricians today. An emphasis upon immunization of susceptible women, prevention of transmissible disease by modification of patient behavior, and identification and treatment of silent infections should become standards of practice. This will require educational initiatives for physicians and their patients as well as continued clinical trials to determine costs and effectiveness.
PMCID: PMC2364562  PMID: 18476170
5.  Vulvar Vestibulitis—A Complex Clinical Entity 
Objective: This study aims to determine the pathophysiology of vulvar vestibulitis and to evaluate currently used treatment options.
Methods: Two hundred twenty women with vulvar vestibulitis were seen between October 1987 and March 1995. Every patient had vulvar pain when they attempted intercourse, 75% had excessive vaginal discharge, 36.4% had constant or recurring vulvar burning, and 10.9% had symptoms suggestive of cystitis. All were cultured for the presence of Candida albicans. One hundred sixty-one (73.2%) were also tested for vaginal IgE and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2); 72 (32.7%) had a vulvar biopsy performed as well.
Results: A wide range of variants were noted: 53 (24.1%) had a human papilloma virus (HPV) infection, 25 (11.4%) had a Candida vulvovaginitis, 43 (19.5%) had a vaginal allergy, 15 (6.8%) had vaginal PGE2 present, 14 (6.4%) had elevated urinary oxalate excretion, and 29 (13.2%) had a variety of diagnosed variants. In 81 (36.8%) no underlying diagnosis was made. This understates the numbers and varieties of vulvar vaginal diagnoses, for not all patients received a vaginal fluid analysis, a vulvar biopsy, or a 24 h urine screen for oxalates. A variety of medical and operative interventions was used. Symptoms were relieved in 65.9% of patients. The degree of sueeess varied. Successful outcomes were achieved in 14.3% of patients using a low oxalate diet and calcium citrate supplementation, 16% with anti-Candida treatment, 48.1% with antihistamines, 77% with vulvar injection of interferon, 83% with operative removal of inflamed vulvar tissue, and a posterior colporrhaphy used to cover the cutaneous defect.
Conclusions: The diagnosis of vulvar vestibulitis is easy to make. An etiology for this chronic condition will not be achieved in every patient. A majority of patients can get relief by a variety of medical and operative interventions.
PMCID: PMC2364514  PMID: 18476106
7.  To Vaccinate or Not to Vaccinate—opinion 
PMCID: PMC2364403  PMID: 18475410
8.  Preventive Antepartum Care 
As the role of the obstetrician-gynecologist evolves to include primary care, the obstetrician must assume greater responsibility for providing prenatal preventive care, particularly regarding the STORCH5 pathogens.
PMCID: PMC2364363  PMID: 18475371
9.  Pregnancy Outcome Following Pelvic Infection 
To determine whether a previous pelvic infection has an effect on the outcome of a subsequent pregnancy, we identified women with a diagnosis of pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), amnionitis, and postpartum or postabortal endometritis-salpingitis by a retrospective chart review of all patients admitted to the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at The New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center between 1975 and 1977 and between 1985 and 1988. Antimicrobial regimens effective against Chlamydia trachomatis were initiated in 1985. Controls were randomly selected patients presenting during the same time period for routine examinations who had normal Pap smears and no infections. Both groups were comparable for age, race, gravity, and parity. Differences were evaluated by chi square analysis, using the Yates correction factor. We identified 183 women with a history of the above infections who subsequently conceived, and 82 controls. There were no differences in outcome between the two index groups. Term vaginal deliveries occurred in 14.2% of the women with a prior pelvic infection and in 56% of the controls (P < 0.001). Among the 97 women who had had PID, 21 (21.6%) had a spontaneous abortion in the subsequent pregnancy, as opposed to 6 (7.3%) of the controls (P = 0.013). In addition, eight of the women with PID (but no controls) went into preterm labor (P = 0.021). An increased incidence of preterm labor (P = 0.001) was also observed in women with a history of amnionitis. A history of endometritis was not associated with an increased prevalence of abnormal outcome in subsequent pregnancies. PID and amnionitis may adversely affect the outcome of subsequent pregnancies.
PMCID: PMC2364674  PMID: 18476199

Results 1-9 (9)