Dispelling Morning Sickness Myths–It’s Not What You Might Think

Severe morning sickness during pregnancy, known as hyperemesis gravidarum or HG, is one of the most common reasons for hospitalization during early pregnancy. It’s a condition that can lead to dehydration and weight loss in expecting mothers and has been linked to poor outcomes in babies.

However, a discovery published in late 2023 about HG’s most likely cause may lead to better treatments, and possibly its prevention, in the near future.

HG should be taken more seriously than it is, according to researcher Marlena Fejzo, who was the lead author of the study, published in the journal Nature, which found that a hormone called growth and differentiation factor 15 (GDF15) contributes to HG.

In an interview with The Epoch Times, Ms. Fejzo emphasized the importance of her findings to the treatment of pregnant women with HG and addressed three myths about the condition.

Myth 1

The Hormone hCG or the Psychological Stress of Pregnancy Causes HG

She called the idea that HG is psychosomatic (that is, a psychological response to the stress of pregnancy) a “misogynistic theory” and noted that it is still taught in medical schools today.

Myth 2

Severe Morning Sickness Is Harmless

The misunderstanding that HG is unpleasant but harmless “leaves patients at risk for being dismissed and undertreated,” Ms. Fejzo explained.

Myth 3

Severe Morning Sickness Occurs Only in Humans

This mistaken belief contributes to doctors “blaming” pregnant women and labeling HG a psychosomatic rather than a biological condition.

Source: 12ft

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