One of my favorite pregnancy hobbies is obsessively researching dangerous pregnancy-related conditions. I know, I know, I could knit, but that would be relaxing, whereas this is more congruent with my other pastimes, which include worrying about the future and raking over the past. That's how I happened to look up preeclampsia, specifically because I interviewed actress Jane Seymour and she said she got it during one of her pregnancies, so I figured I needed a new worry charm for my shiny bracelet of maternal concerns.
First, I found this description on the Mayo Clinic's website:
"Preeclampsia is a condition of pregnancy marked by high blood pressure and excess protein in your urine after 20 weeks of pregnancy."
This merited a trip to Wikipedia, where I found all sorts of links to academic papers on the subject and, buried therein, the dryly worded but unmistakable information about oral.
After I did some digesting about ingesting, I had to stand up from my desk chair and say to no one in particular, "Really?" If I've heard about a new mother eating her own placenta in a panini, if I've scoured sights like this for every possible detail about pregnancy, how have I missed this gem? Some of the studies I read weren't all that new, but you'd think they would have made a bigger and more long-lasting splash.
Maybe penises need a new publicist.
Now, to be fair, the Dutch researchers do warn that with a new partner, condoms should be used to prevent sexually transmitted diseases: "However, a certain period of sperm exposure within a stable relation, when pregnancy is aimed for, is associated with a partial protection against preeclampsia," they insist.
As far as I can tell, there seem to be myriad causes of preeclampsia and similar conditions, and it's too complicated a medical issue for anyone, least of all me, to fully understand. Still, while some of these hypotheses have been challenged, they don't seem to have been debunked. So to conclude, I will fall back on the medical opinion I always have about things that are either Suzanne Somers-y, or reek of placebo-ness, but are obviously benign: It can't hurt, right? At the very least, your baby will have a happy, relaxed father and parents who are intimate. Sex During Pregnancy