Monday, January 20, 2014

NPR's "In Pregnancy, What's Worse? Cigarettes Or The Nicotine Patch?"

This story discusses the many levels of analysis required to get to the bottom of the hypothesis stated in the title of this story. For instance, are cigarettes or the patch better for mom? The baby? If the patch isn't great for either but still better than smoking, what sort of advice should a health care provider give to their patient who is struggling to quit smoking? What about animal model data? I think this story also opens up the conversation about how few medical interventions are tested on pregnant women (understandably so), and, as such,  researchers have to opt for more observational research studies when investigating medical interventions for protected populations.