Stoke Prevention Guidelines for women have just been issued by the American Heart Association / American Stroke Association (AHA/ASA) to reduce their risk of stroke. The issue of how men and women differ in their stroke risks has long been discussed so these guidelines are welcomed. The stroke prevention guidelines were published in a recent issue of Stroke and set forth methodology to determine a stroke risk score specifically for women. Each year, there are 55,000 more strokes in women than men. While stroke is the 5th leading cause of death in men, it is the 3rd leading cause of death in women. The guidelines point out that it critical to identify women at risk for stroke and to implement preventive care.
The incidence of pertussis (whooping cough) has risen dramatically in recent years reflecting the relative weak immunogenicity of the acellular vaccine compared with the prior whole-cell vaccine used prior to 1996. The vaccine is typically given as a combination known as Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria and acellular pertussis). To compensate for the reduced effectiveness of the acellular form, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) now recommends that adults and adolescents get booster shots to provide protection from infection. However, the booster has not lowered the incidence of the disease in neonates. The recommendation is supported by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) except for women who have been previously vaccinated.