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DES Update: Health Care Providers

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The following content is no longer maintained and may be out of date. Persons with disabilities having difficulty accessing the information on this page may contact for assistance. Please view the Updated Bibliographies on the Updated Bibliographies page for updated information on this topic.


 Health Care Providers Home
 Information to Identify and Manage DES Patients
 Supplemental DES Materials for Nurses
 DES Brand Names
 Resources and Educational Tools
 DES References

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 CDC would like to thank the following people for their contributions to the development of the health care provider site: Janet Pregler, M.D., Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Director, Iris Cantor-UCLA Women's Health Center, Center Director, UCLA National Center of Excellence in Women's Health, and Anne Holohan, Ph. D., Iris Cantor-UCLA Women's Education and Resource Center.
It is estimated that between 5 and 10 million people were exposed to diethylstilbestrol (DES) in the US during 1938-1971. DES was thought to be a safe and effective way to prevent miscarriages or premature deliveries. However, later studies revealed that DES had harmful side effects. Many people are still unaware of their exposure to DES and the potential health effects.
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Health Care Providers
This section of CDC's DES Update has been specifically designed to help health care providers learn more about DES exposure and its known health effects to facilitate identifying, managing, and counseling DES-exposed patients.





Image of a mortar and pestelAn overview of the pharmacology of DES, data indicating lack of efficacy for DES use as prevention of miscarriage, and clinical indications and current uses for DES.
DES Brand Names
Image of pillsA list of the most commonly used names and spellings for DES and similar drugs.
Resources and Educational Tools
Image of foldersA series of educational tools and resources for clinicians and nurses, DES lecture presentation, case studies, self-study module, a listing of DES support organizations, and a DES research bibliography.
Information To Identify and Manage DES Patients
Image of a middle-aged womanResearch has revealed health effects for women prescribed DES during pregnancy and the offspring (DES Sons and Daughters) born of those pregnancies. In addition, research is underway to determine if the offspring of DES Sons and Daughters might have health effects related to DES exposure. These grandchildren of women prescribed DES during pregnancy are sometimes called the "Third Generation."
Supplemental DES Materials for Nurses
Image of a nurseNurses have an important role in identifying persons who might have been exposed to DES during intake interviews, as well as in counseling patients and assisting in appropriate referrals for further information and treatment. Information in this section will help you facilitate this role.
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