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Sexual victimisation more in autistic adults

Lack of sexual knowledge in adults with autism puts them at a higher risk of sexual victimisation, sexual coercion, unwanted sexual contact, attempted rape or rape, a study shows.

“Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) gain more of their sexual knowledge from external sources such as the internet and the television whereas social sources would include parents, teachers and peers,” explained professor Jonathan Weiss from York University.  The researchers used an online survey involving 95 adults with ASD and 117 without it in age group 19 to 43. Of the 95 participants with ASD, 78 percent reported at least one occurrence of sexual victimisation compared to 47.4 per cent of the 117 adults without ASD. “Some may not know that the experience they had is actually classified as sexual victimisation. But if you give them a specific situation, like someone touching you inappropriately after you said no, they may be more able to identify that it has happened to them,” said Stephanie Brown-Lavoie, a researcher in clinical developmental psychology. 

Researchers hoped that the study results will lead to more programmes aimed at teaching sex education to individuals with disabilities.
Severe sleep apnea aggravates blood pressure

Severe sleep apnea contributes to the risk of increased blood pressure level despite the use of medication to control it, researchers have found.

Dr. Harneet Walia of the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine said that this was an important finding from a clinical perspective as poor blood pressure control in the patients taking multiple anti-hypertensive medications, made them vulnerable to increased cardiovascular risk. Timothy Morgenthaler, American Academy of Sleep Medicine President, said that over one-third of patients with hypertension and nearly eight out of 10 patients with treatment resistant hypertension had obstructive sleep apnea.
Gut bacteria increases obesity risk in adults, says study

A new study has suggested that microbes found in the gut might cause metabolic changes that increase the risk of obesity in adulthood.

Senior author Martin Blaser of the NYU Langone Medical Center said that they identified infancy as a critical window where host metabolism was especially vulnerable to microbiota disruption with antibiotics and this highlighted a need for its cautious use in clinical practice.

 The study demonstrated that earlier penicillin exposure led to more substantial obesity in adulthood, and early exposure to antibiotics also reduced levels of several types of potentially protective bacteria exacerbating the effects of a high-fat diet on obesity.

Lead study author Laura Cox of the NYU Langone Medical Center said that their findings implied that restoring good bacteria could prevent the long-term metabolic effects of early antibiotic exposure. 
IVF may fail in women with vitamin D deficiency

A study conducted at the US Centre for Disease Control and Prevention has suggested that women with lack of Vitamin D were nearly half as likely to conceive through in vitro fertilisation (IVF) as compared to women who had sufficient levels of the vitamin.

The researchers analysed vitamin D levels in women who were referred to the Infertility Unit of the Fondazione Ca' Granda at Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico for IVF in 2012.

Study author, Alessio Paffoni of the Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico in Milan asserted that this was the largest study to date to examine how vitamin D affected fertility in women who were undergoing IVF. They found that women who had sufficient levels of vitamin D were more likely to produce high-quality embryos and more likely to become pregnant than women with deficiency.

Paffoni added that their results certainly suggested that since vitamin D supplementation was an inexpensive and simple intervention with few relevant side effects, additional study in this area had the potential to markedly influence the way infertility is treated.

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