Sunday, December 28, 2008

Why Every Week of Pregnancy Counts

This is a must read article that appeared at WSJ, just wanted to share it with you.

This time of year, some hospitals see a small uptick in baby deliveries thanks to families eager to fit the blessed event in around holiday plans or in time to claim a tax deduction. Conventional wisdom has long held that inducing labor or having a Caesarean section a bit early posed little risk, since after 34 weeks gestation, all the baby has to do was grow.

But new research shows that those last weeks of pregnancy are more important than once thought for brain, lung and liver development. And there may be lasting consequences for babies born at 34 to 36 weeks, now called "late preterm."

A study in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology in October calculated that for each week a baby stayed in the womb between 32 and 39 weeks, there is a 23% decrease in problems such as respiratory distress, jaundice, seizures, temperature instability and brain hemorrhages.

A study of nearly 15,000 children in the Journal of Pediatrics in July found that those born between 32 and 36 weeks had lower reading and math scores in first grade than babies who went to full term. New research also suggests that late preterm infants are at higher risk for mild cognitive and behavioral problems and may have lower I.Q.s than those who go full term.

What's more, experts warn that a fetus's estimated age may be off by as much as two weeks either way, meaning that a baby thought to be 36 weeks along might be only 34.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the March of Dimes are now urging obstetricians not to deliver babies before 39 weeks unless there is a medical reason to do so.

"It's very important for people to realize that every week counts," says Lucky E. Jain, a professor of pediatrics at Emory University School of Medicine.

It's unclear how many deliveries are performed early for nonmedical reasons. Preterm births (before 37 weeks) have risen 31% in the U.S. since 1981 -- to one in every eight births. The most serious problems are seen in the tiniest babies. But nearly 75% of preterm babies are born between 34 and 36 weeks, and much of the increase has come in C-sections, which now account for a third of all U.S. births. An additional one-fifth of all births are via induced labor, up 125% since 1989.
Join a Discussion

Are parents too eager to induce labor or schedule an early C-section for sheer convenience? Are doctors too willing to go along? Share your views.

Many of those elective deliveries are done for medical reasons such as fetal distress or pre-eclampsia, a sudden spike in the mother's blood pressure. Those that aren't can be hard to distinguish. "Obstetricians know the rules and they are very creative about some of their indications -- like 'impending pre-eclampsia,'" says Alan Fleischman, medical director for the March of Dimes.

Why do doctors agree to deliver a baby early when there's no medical reason? Some cite pressure from parents. "'I'm tired of being pregnant. My fingers are swollen. My mother-in-law is coming' -- we hear that all the time," says Laura E. Riley, medical director of labor and delivery at Massachusetts General Hospital. "But there are 25 other patients waiting, and saying 'no' can take 45 minutes, so sometimes we cave."

There's also a perception that delivering early by c-section is safer for the baby, even though it means major surgery for the mom. "The idea is that somehow, if you're in complete control of the delivery, then only good things will happen. But that's categorically wrong. The baby and the uterus know best," says F. Sessions Cole, director of newborn medicine at St. Louis Children's Hospital.

He explains that a complex series of events occurs in late pregnancy to prepare the baby to survive outside the womb: The fetus acquires fat needed to maintain body temperature; the liver matures enough to eliminate a toxin called bilirubin from the body; and the lungs get ready to exchange oxygen as soon as the umbilical cord is clamped. Disrupting any of those steps can result in brain damage and other problems. In addition, the squeezing of the uterus during labor stimulates the baby and the placenta to make steroid hormones that help this last phase of lung maturation -- and that's missed if the mother never goes into labor.

"We don't have a magic ball to predict which babies might have problems," says Dr. Cole. "But we can say that the more before 39 weeks a baby is delivered, the more likely that one or more complications will occur."

In cases where there are medical reasons to deliver a baby early, lung maturation can be determined with amniocentesis -- using a long needle to withdraw fluid from inside the uterus. But that can cause infection, bleeding or a leak or fetal distress, which could require an emergency c-section.

Trying to determine maturity by the size of the fetus can also be problematic. Babies of mothers with gestational diabetes are often very large for their age, but even less developed for their age than normal-size babies.

Growing beyond 42 weeks can also pose problems, since the placenta deteriorates and can't sustain the growing baby.

Making families aware of the risks of delivering early makes a big difference. In Utah, where 27% of elective deliveries in 1999 took place before the 39th week, a major awareness campaign has reduced that to less than 5%. At two St. Louis hospitals that send premature babies to Dr. Cole's neonatal intensive-care unit, obstetricians now ask couples who want to schedule a delivery before 39 weeks to sign a consent form acknowledging the risks. At that point, many wait for nature to take its course, says Dr. Cole.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Pregnancy Complications

Having a general view of your pregnancy is a better way to avoid some of the complications that can have a catastrophic end for you and your baby's health.

The vast majority of births take place so perfect and without any incident.

However, understanding the main complications of pregnancy can be reassuring and most importantly, helps to understand all the problems calmly to resolve as quickly as possible.

Miscarriage

A miscarriage is to lose your baby before the 28th week. From 3 months, the risk of miscarriage has virtually disappeared.

Today, doctors have effective means to control and prevent this risk.

Detected early, the threat of miscarriage is closely monitored and in most cases resulted in a happy ending.


How to recognize a risk of miscarriage?


Constant bleeding and painful (pain identical to the rules) in the lower abdomen are signs that should alert you.

Consult your doctor immediately, it will recommend the rest (often, some women spend 3 / 4 of their pregnancy in bed which can seem unbearable. However, the game does not worth the candle?)

When the bleeding stops, the risk of miscarriage is rejected.

For the rest of your pregnancy, you are advised to remain vigilant and to allow the maximum.

The premature birth

Giving birth at 8th months is safe for your baby. It is said that at this stage your pregnancy is in term.

However, before that birth date (from 6th to 8th month) can lead to many complications for your child who has missed time to grow.

Even if the current medicine reaches can keep them alive in early premature birth (6 months), they often retain the legacy of this venue in the world too fast.

Accordingly, it is important to recognize the warning signs of premature delivery.

One major sign is the emergence of contractions your stomach is hard as "concrete" (contractions may be accompanied by pain) at regular intervals.

In this case, you should also tell your doctor to prescribe you the appropriate treatment and rest.

The Rhesus

This complication will not be a great development because it is detected during your 1st laboratory analysis.

Indeed, tests analyze your blood. If it is Rh-and the father is Rh +, you will receive the appropriate medical surveillance. This is due to the fact that a rhesus positive and negative (baby / mom can not come into contact).

Today, this complication is well known and is still treated in time therefore, do not worry!

Hope this information was useful for you and that you now know about some pregnancy complications.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Travelling During Pregnancy

You are pregnant, not sick! You should enjoy your vacation. But without forgetting the words master of your future programme: caution and restraint

Traveling by car

Note that Traveling by car is a high-risk pregnant woman.

Traveling by car is very tiring, and the position of the legs is still not recommended for pregnant women.

Adjust your belt to your stomach. Indeed, it will pass below your belly so as not to cause shock on your abdomen.

If you need to make long journeys, ask the essential advice from your doctor. You must stop every 100 km to relax your legs, walk and relax a little.

From the second quarter, do not drive. You can sit at the front, the passenger seat, allowing you to back seat and thus have the legs extended. However, this place is dangerous, it is best to install on the rear seats and wedge your back with a pillow.

Traveling by train

The train is a means of transport more reliable and less tiring than the car. Indeed, it is a means of rapid transit, you must focus on direct trains.

In addition, you can avoid tingling in the legs moving inside the train. Therefore prefer places later corridor, which will help you get up whenever you like.

Traveling by plane

The aircraft is also a means of transport more reliable than the car for pregnant women. If your pregnancy is proceeding normally, you should be able to fly without problems until the seventh month.

Some tips:

Prefer places later corridor, it will be easier to get up if you go to the toilet.

Place your belt under the belly. When the aircraft had completed its take-off phase, remember to tilt your seat. You avoid in this way the compressing of your stomach.

Note that the inactivity of the legs in the air can result in risks of phlebitis. Talk to your doctor, he probably advise you to wear tights of restraint to avoid this. Drink plenty of water.

If you have a risk of premature delivery, if you are smoking, if you have cardiovascular problems, always consult your doctor before getting on an airplane.

Note this:

In early pregnancy, you should spend your first prenatal examination before boarding the plane.

Be aware that some airlines ask for a letter from your doctor indicating the stage of your pregnancy.

Some airlines refuse to carry pregnant women from the eighth month.

Check the terms of your travel insurance. If you decide to embark on long-haul, make sure it accepts the terms of repatriation.

The destination

If you go to distant destinations, note the following:

You must remove from the list of destination countries where malaria because the pregnant woman is only allowed to take certain drugs such as quinine or chloroquine.

Avoid high-altitude destinations. Indeed, the fetus could run out of oxygen.

Check that the contribution of your diet is quite rich in calcium. In some regions, it is hard to find pasteurized milk.

Beware of the sun! It could appear on your face the famous mask of pregnancy.

If you want to go on holiday, prefer the train or plane. If you are obliged to take the car, avoid driving yourself.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Off Topic: Rum Cocktail for The New Year

Yeah i know and i hear you screaming this is off topic and let's me remind you => alcohol IS REALLY BAD for pregnant woman's and you must not take it.

So why I'm writing about this? because my husband really love rum cocktail and i found an interesting article about 3 cocktail that i would like to share with you

Here you go: rum cocktail

Please if you have any recipe for rum cocktail feel free to contact me i will appreciate.

Thank You
Sara

Monday, December 15, 2008

Exercise During Pregnancy: When and Why Should I Practice?

Practicing exercises during your pregnancy is good thing to do; it will keep you healthy and your baby too. Discover when you should and shouldn't practice exercises during your pregnancy.

In principle, you can practice your favorite sport during your pregnancy, since his practice is moderate and is not violent. For pregnant women, the sport is even more beneficial. Indeed, several studies have shown that pregnant women who regularly engaged in a sporting activity seemed less pain in childbirth, and therefore less use of analgesics. In addition, they took less weight during pregnancy, and more easily lose excess weight after childbirth. Paying less prone to stretch and venous complications caused by pregnancy, the sport is also essential for the oxygenation of the mother and baby.

When should I practice exercises?

I advise you to be very vigilant when you practice exercises, you should always seek the advice of your doctor. Indeed, in your early months of pregnancy, changes in the body of the mother affect its ability to make the sport she used to practice. Some of theme are:

-*- an increase in heart rate tension,

-*- an increased oxygen need,

-*- faster hypoglycaemia,

-*- more difficult thermoregulation,

-*- a change in the balance,

-*- an increase in blood volume,

Recommended Sports for pregnant women

Swimming

An excellent sport for the back and the circulation of blood to the heart and joints.

Gymnastics

There are gymnastics classes specially designed for pregnant women. The strengths of these meetings revolve around exercises Basin and strengthening the abdominal muscles, relaxation and the training to the perception of his own body.

The aqua

The benefits of water and gymnastics in one! It is strongly recommended for pregnant women because it strengthens the abdominal and back muscles and stimulates blood circulation.

Walking

It is good for the body and good for the heart.

Dance

To the extent that you do not make sudden movements or contortions.

Yoga

Some positions, suited to pregnant women, help the body and mind to relax.

You still need to monitor !

-*- Gradually reduce the effort, monitoring the supply of the body in carbohydrates, especially in a sport of endurance, avoid a sudden increase in body temperature

-*- Be extremely careful not to practice a sport where you could get injured. Indeed, the consequences of an injury (radio, anesthesia ...) and the convalescent period that follows could seriously increase the risk for your pregnancy!

-*- Sport is also strongly not recommended for women with diabetes, women who have already suffered a miscarriage, having heart problems or where there is a risk of premature birth.

When shouldn't I practice exercises?

All violent sports should be excluded during pregnancy. In effect, they increase the risk of premature birth. The hormones secreted by the body during intense efforts cause contractions.

Some of the sports listed below may have even cause more serious problems, be very careful!

Team sports

Volleyball, basketball, etc...

Combat sports

Judo, fencing

Sports at risk of falling

Such as water skiing, surfing, the tackle, Roller skating.

Sports over 2000m├Ętres altitude.

Sports asking too much of endurance or strength.

Marathon, body-building,

And of course any type sport parachuting, bungee jumping, boxing, diving, etc...

Whatever sport you want to practice during your pregnancy, consult your doctor, because he alone is able to determine what sport are suited for you.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Medicine Consumption During Your Pregnancy

You will need during your pregnancy to be more cautious than ever about the consumption of drugs. Indeed, certain substances in drugs can cross the placental barrier and seriously impair the health of your baby. 

Auto-Treatment

You must renounce to the auto-treatment habitude, even in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. Indeed the main organs of baby formed during the first 6 weeks of pregnancy, so taking uncontrolled drugs could have irreversible consequences on their formation. Be extremely careful, even for relatively minor things such as colds, a headache or other, always ask advice from your doctor, he's alone is able to prescribe the drug recommended in your state. No matter that drug considered inoffensive can be very dangerous during pregnancy.

If you suffer from headaches, try therefore you lengthen and put a wet washcloth on your forehead. It is often very effective!

How to treat a chronic ill during pregnancy?

If you suffer from chronic diseases such as diabetes and you must take regular medication, you should consult a doctor before your pregnancy. It will point to specific treatment.

During pregnancy, you must undergo treatment under the supervision of your doctor rigorously, which adapts to your medication schedule.

Attention to the drug just before delivery.

When you take a medication during pregnancy, the substance that contains pass through the placenta, then the placental barrier and then be destroyed by your metabolic system. But if you take a drug imminent at the time of delivery, the substance will not have time to pass through the placental barrier. The body of the newborn will therefore contain a product that will be extremely difficult to evacuate. Thus, the baby may have serious respiratory difficulties and even to find child care.

If the evacuation of each drug substance take few hours in the mother, it can take weeks in the newborn, it is for this reason that doctors, faced with imminent delivery, give the mother a drug which we know the antidote that will be injected to the baby at birth.

Homeopathic medicines

They may be the solution to the ills of pregnant women. However, a homeopathic treatment should also be prescribed by your doctor, even then, caution is in order.

The advantage of a homeopathic medicine is that they have no side effects. Moreover, it does not create addiction, unlike some conventional medicines, it may be of great help to heal small diseases during your pregnancy such as nausea, vomiting. It may also be very effective in relieving small depressed and anxieties that often accompany pregnancy.

Always consult your doctor before taking any medication. Indeed, a drug that had no bearing at any stage of pregnancy can be very dangerous to another stage of pregnancy.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

New Design

Today i have changed my blog design to be more clear and to help you navigate the blog in a better way, I hope that you will love this new template.

Feel free to post any comments or suggestion about the blog or about this new design, all comment are welcome.

Sara
Thank you

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