The Perth scientist who made the world-first discovery that human breast milk contains stem cells is confident that within five years scientists will be harvesting them to research treatment for conditions as far-reaching as spinal injuries, diabetes and Parkinson’s disease.
But what Dr Mark Cregan is excited about right now is the promise that his discovery could be the start of many more exciting revelations about the potency of breast milk.
Hoping to schedule your baby’s birth while your mother’s in town, or before the doctor goes on vacation? Labor is becoming less of a late-night surprise, but some hospitals are starting to tighten the rules for elective deliveries — because some babies are being delivered too early.
More hospitals are expected to crack down as regulators begin new quality measurements next spring that aim to reduce too-early elective inductions and first-time cesareans.
I’ve heard it a hundred times and I should be used to it. But I’m not. It happened again last week.
My friend was having her third baby. She’s already pushed out two babies without problems – an 8 pound and a 9 pound baby.
She’s into natural birth, even considered a home birth… but then got nervous thinking about it and went on with the obstetrician. He is a nice man. I like him a lot. If I had to pick a doctor, he’d be in the top dozen that I know. But he works in the hospital and thinks the way he was trained.
There has been much discussion about using schools for an “all out” vaccination campaign this fall, for both the regular flu shot and the new H1N1 vaccine.1 According to authorities, students would ideally be vaccinated before school starts, but the swine flu vaccine won’t be available until mid-October, making schools a logical place to begin mass vaccination.
Why is childbirth, which should be such a unique and individual experience for the woman, treated in such a highly standardized way in the United States? No matter how long or short, how easy or hard their labors, the vast majority of American women are hooked up to an electronic fetal monitor and an IV (intravenously administered fluids and/or medication), are encouraged to use pain-relieving drugs, receive an episiotomy (a surgical incision in the vagina to widen the birth outlet in order to prevent tearing) at the moment of birth, and are separated from their babies shortly after birth. Most of them also receive doses of the synthetic hormone pitocin to speed their labors, and give birth flat on their backs. Nearly one quarter of them are delivered by Cesarean section.
The induction of labor can be done for many reasons, including many valid medical reasons. However, the rise in the rate of social inductions, or elective inductions is on the rise. As the induction rate rises there are more babies and mothers placed at risk for certain complications. Here are five risks of induction that you may not know about:
Right now, cesareans are 1/3 of all births per year. Choosing not to do VBACs is a choice to further limit your practice and since they are growing exponentially, it’s also making sure that long-term, you will be run out of practice. Birth centers are already scrambling for turf, this can’t help.
Doctors have long known that infants who are breast-fed contract fewer infections than do those who are given formula. Until fairly recently, most physicians presumed that breast-fed children fared better simply because milk supplied directly from the breast is free of bacteria. Formula, which must often be mixed with water and placed in bottles, can become contaminated easily. Yet even infants who receive sterilized formula suffer from more meningitis and infection of the gut, ear, respiratory tract and urinary tract than do breast-fed youngsters.
The reason, it turns out, is that mother’s milk actively helps newborns avoid disease in a variety of ways. Such assistance is particularly beneficial during the first few months of life, when an infant often cannot mount an effective immune response against foreign organisms. And although it is not the norm in most industrial cultures, UNICEF and the World Health Organization both advise breast-feeding to “two years and beyond.” Indeed, a child’s immune response does not reach its full strength until age five or so.
In her recent UTSpeaks public lecture To Push or Pull?, Professor Fenwick discussed the findings of interviews with 210 women in Queensland and Western Australia that revealed fear as the strongest motive for women to undergo caesarean section where there was no clear-cut medical reason for it.
Professor Fenwick said that while the media liked to propose vanity or convenience as reasons for the deliberate choice of caesarean section, the research findings supported the notion that most women were in favour of natural birth until convinced otherwise.
In an honest yet damning press release today, ACOG released survey data that revealed that the changes OB-GYNs feel forced to make to their practices due to their fear of being sued ultimately hurt patients.
An OB-GYN recently reported (via e-mail) that litigation feels devastating to a physician who takes pride in their expertise and caring. Litigation is often a factor in depressive symptoms and suicide in physicians and one Texas physician is reported to have left a suicide note the day he settled a lawsuit which read, “I hope that my death will shed light on the problem of dishonest expert testimony.”
Every time Ruth Lubic fusses over a healthy baby, the joy in her voice comes from eight long years of beating the odds. In Washington, D.C., where the infant mortality rate is almost double the national average, CBS News correspondent Wyatt Andrews reports.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of infant deaths per 1,000 births in the United States is 6.8 – but in Washington, it’s 12.2.
Lubic and her team of midwives run a birthing clinic in one of the city’s poorest areas. After 800 babies in eight years, they have never lost a child in childbirth, and has cut the rate of premature births – the biggest risk factor for infant mortality – in half.
Why is it that governments and health care providers make donor blood a priority, but don’t make donor milk a priority? Why is it that despite the existence of artificial blood products, we have intricate and complex systems set up to collect and screen donor blood from other human beings to provide to those in need. Why is it that despite the opportunity to set up similar systems to collect and screen donor milk we settle for giving our babies artificial milk products?
Rural parts of Ayacucho, Peru, have had some of the country’s highest death rates in pregnancy and childbirth. As in many poor countries, most of the deaths occur because women give birth at home, and those trying to help do not know how to deliver a baby safely and prevent or treat hemorrhage, infection and other deadly complications. In 1999 in the Santillana district, part of the Ayacucho region, only 6 percent of births took place at a clinic.
Health workers set out to change that. They started by asking people in the community about traditional ways of giving birth, and about what the clinic was doing wrong. They got an earful. Workers at the clinic did not speak the local language, Quechua. They treated patients brusquely, and barred husbands and other relatives from the delivery room. They forced women to wear hospital gowns instead of their own clothes, and made them give birth lying on a table instead of squatting. They threw away the placenta instead of giving it to the family to bury in a warm place.
When I called my mother and said I was thinking about having a home birth, she screamed, “Oh my God, why? What’s wrong with the Birth Center? It’s just like home, isn’t it?”
True, the Birth Center where I’d had my daughter, Dominique, six years earlier was homey enough, and it was definitely alternative enough for my mother. I’d been very happy with the experience-except for the fact that we had arrived only 10 minutes before the baby was born.
A pregnant woman’s pleas not to have an unnecessary caesarean are being ignored by Page Hospital administrators.
Joy Szabo, 32, said she is upset with Page Hospital’s general ruling in June prohibiting vaginal births after cesareans (VBAC). The mother of three children, she has given birth to all of her children at Page Hospital, the only hospital in the immediate area. A placenta eruption caused her to have an emergency cesarean delivering her second child, but the hospital allowed her third child to be delivered naturally two years ago.
A Valley woman says she has a billing problem with her doctor’s office.
The billing problem has to do with a “well woman exam,” basically it is an annual physical for women.
The woman you are about to meet says it was supposed to be covered 100% by her insurance carrier, so why does she keep getting billed by the doctor’s office?
To the dismay of many obstetricians, more pregnant women in the United States are choosing to deliver their babies at home. However, the number of home births in the nation is still relatively small compared to other developed countries. One percent of U.S. births are at home, compared to nearly 30 percent in the Netherlands, according to a report in USA Today.
Despite warnings from doctors, some women, like Mara Vaughan of Bristow, Va., prefer delivering their baby in the comfort of their own home.
Breast-fed babies receive a different milk drink depending on the time of day – the natural equivalent of cappuccino in the morning and Horlicks at night, say scientists.
Breast milk delivered in the morning gives infants a pick-me-up because it contains natural stimulants.
But the night-time version will help babies sleep thanks to calming chemical compounds, a report claims.
fter recently making it through her own pregnancy, Registered Dietitian Michelle Dudash became convinced that for every pregnant woman, a new mom’s tale is born.
It’s no wonder that there are more Old Wive’s Tales regarding pregnancy than anything else. Along with “carry low it’s a boy” and “castor oil can induce contractions,” most of her friends’ new found nutrition knowledge is, well, just myth.