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Re: You’ve Heard of Thalidomide Babies, what about DES Babies? Are you one?

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this is news to me...and horrific at that!
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You’ve Heard of Thalidomide Babies, what about DES Babies? Are you one?

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Slide1.JPGSlide1.JPGIt’s a startling reality that DES Mothers, DES Daughters and DES Sons live with—that not many people know about or have heard about the pregnancy drug DES—diethylstilbestrol—or the harmful effects its had on both mothers who took the drug, and children who were exposed to the drug in utero.
 
DES was prescribed during the 1940’s and into the 1970’s to expectant mothers who were at risk for miscarriage or pre-term delivery. The drug, however, was found to potentially cause clear cell adenocarcinoma (CCA), a rare form of vaginal and cervical cancer; reproductive tract structural changes such as a T-shaped uterus; complications in pregnancy such as ectopic (tubal) pregnancy and pre-term delivery; and infertility.
 
DES finally had its FDA approval revoked in 2000 (it had been recommended that doctors not prescribe it in 1971)—but not until potentially millions of mothers and children had been negatively affected by it. And those children are now between forty and seventy years of age or so—some of whom have lived through infertility or miscarriages of their own without knowing that the reason could be connected to exposure to DES.
 
And that begs the question: why do so few people know about DES and the damage its caused? DES seems to be in the shadows of thalidomide—so much so that it’s been referred to as the ‘silent thalidomide’ in the press.
 
There are some possible reasons why, of course.
First, thalidomide was never approved for use in the US. DES was approved which perhaps made it appear less pernicious—after all, ‘my doctor prescribed it’.
 
Second, thalidomide babies could not help but evoke the collective sympathy and outrage of all who had seen a picture of an innocent newborn with severe birth defects such as missing or shortened arms or other severe disfigurement. There are no alarming pictures of DES victims—only faces; and those faces look just like you or me.
 
And finally, thalidomide, by its horrific nature, wove its way into popular culture—probably the most familiar evidence of this for many is the Billy Joel lyric from “We Didn’t Start the Fire”.
Diethylstilbestrol (DES), however, has potentially affected many more women in the US—and their children and perhaps their children’s children (aptly called ‘DES Third Generation’)—than thalidomide and is in some ways a much more heinous drug in that DES is the one that slipped through the proverbial cracks—the one that the FDA didn’t put the brakes on—soon enough.
 
Perhaps you now know about DES. But more importantly, do you know if you were on DES or exposed to it in utero or if your mother was?
 
Author: AbiK
#Diethylstilbestrol
#TheDESTragedy
DESInfo411@gmail.com
 
Karen M. Fernandes
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