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More over 40s having babies and CBT to reduce symptoms of depression

The Guardian reports today that the number of women in their 40s having babies has risen by more than 15% in five years, the biggest rise in any age group, according to NHS statistics.

One in 20 births in London hospitals are to mothers over 40, with the capital also having the lowest rate of teenage deliveries in England. Nationally there were 25,600 deliveries for the over-40s in 2011-12, up from 22,200 in 2006-7, said the NHS information centre for health and social care.

Older mothers were more inclined to have an elective c-section – with 18% oof over-35s opting not to give birth naturally. One in 10 mothers aged 25 to 34 had the elective surgery and 5% of those under 25 gave birth by caesarean, according to the data.

Elsewhere the BBC reports on a Lancet study which found that cognitive behavioural therapy can reduce symptoms of depression in people who fail to respond to drug treatment.

CBT, a type of psychotherapy, was found to benefit nearly half of the 234 patients who received it combined with normal care from their GP.

Up to two-thirds of people with depression do not respond to anti-depressants.

And finally the Daily Telegraph reports that taking the common breast cancer drug Tamoxifen for ten years could save 300 extra lives, according to a new study.

It says that women should take tamoxifen for breast cancer for ten years rather than five, after showing that it continues to cut mortality for years after stopping it.

The findings in the Lancet show that for every 10,000 pre-menopausal women, 3,300 would be dead 15 years after diagnosis if they took nothing.

If they took tamoxifen for five years, then 900 deaths could be avoided meaning 2,400 women died from their cancer within 15 years.


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