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Thursday, November 30, 2006
Born Too Early: A Mom's Story Pt.2
By Liz McCarthy

The First Part of this Story can be found at Born Too Early; A Mom's Story Pt.1

The emotions of loss while at the same time knowing you have a daughter whose life is hanging by a thread has to be the hardest thing anyone should have to go through.

Kaitlyn weighed 1 pound 11 ounces at birth. She was born 13 weeks early, at 26 weeks gestation. Brian’s wedding band fit over Kaitlyn’s foot. Kaitlyn spent a long 127 days in the NICU. That’s over 4 months! I wasn’t able to hold Kaitlyn, she was covered in wires, she was under blue lights to treat jaundice, and she was on a ventilator. Kaitlyn had so many blood transfusions I lost count. She had constant heel pricks to get her blood to test for numerous things. She was at risk for NEC, PDA, ROP, BPD…the alphabet soup of scary things that I knew nothing about. I had a crash course in Medicine (I’ve since had people ask me if I was a nurse, and I say, no, I’m a Real Estate Broker!)

We were told the NICU experience was like a roller-coaster. Some days she did better than others, some days were absolutely awful. Just when you felt she was doing better, we were told that her lungs were filling with fluid and that things were not looking good. She was on a ventilator for a month, and we weren’t allowed to hold her that entire time. Many days when we’d visit Kaitlyn would be sound asleep, and I would just sit there at her bed side, reading to her, cupping her, feeling absolutely helpless. Day after day after day.

The NICU finally told me to stop bringing in breast milk as they ran out of room, as Kaitlyn was so sick, she wasn’t being fed my milk yet, eventually we ran out of room in our freezer at home so we had to purchase a 6-foot tall dedicated freezer.

Here are a couple posts from my blog:

Katilyn is incredibly feisty! I mean really, really feisty. She has a temper like you can’t believe. The docs main concern (besides her lungs of course) is trying to keep her sedated and still, as she hates anything being done to her and kicks, moves, squirms and thrashes. She’s got the longest arms, legs, fingers and toes and when she’s trashing about, she’s kicking her legs, waves her arms and tries to grab all the wires and tubes.

I got to change her diaper today and I got to “cup” her in her isolette which helps her to be less fussy. Her oxygen requirements are much less when I do that, so I do think she can feel my presence.

Today Kaitlyn got her breathing tube removed and went on the CPAP. They removed the face mask and we got to see Kaitlyn for the very first time without any wires or tape on her face! Unfortunately, her face was very “scrunched” up do to the mask that was on it, so she wasn’t looking her best, but she opened up her eyes. It brought tears to both our eyes.

By the time we got home from the hospital, the doctor called us and said she had to removed her from the CPAP and put back on the ventilator.

Afterwards I had a crying break-down. Seems to be a common occurrence for me. I tried to ask Brian how I should feel, as it’s so hard for me to feel “encouraged, joyful, optimism or any type of happiness”. I feel too guilty for feeling this way because of the incredible grief I feel for Corinne. It feels like I’m being disloyal to myself and to Corinne’s memory.

Well, it’s time to pump again and for Brian to change my dressings. It’s like having a full-time job (which I do have but I’m just not going to)…..Between pumping, dressing changes, trying to sleep to recover, time at the hospital, driving to and from the hospital, the entire day flies by.

November 12! I finally got to hold Kaitlyn. Just think of your baby when they were first born and placed on your chest. I had to wait 1 _ months to hold my baby - This moment was so amazing, the tears just ran down my cheeks as I held her gingerly. She was so beautiful! She looked up at my face, my heart melted there on the spot.

Fast forward to the beginning of December when Kaitlyn was diagnosed with Stage 3 ROP. Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP) is what caused Stevie Wonder’s blindness. Premature babies who are exposed to too much oxygen get ROP, which is basically the retinas detaching from the corneas. Kaitlyn needed another surgery, to try to stop the progression of ROP. If you recall, she already had heart surgery when she was 6 days old, and now an eye surgery. Months later, we found out that her ROP progression was stopped by the surgery, and we are still waiting (at a year old) to find out if she’ll need glasses for her near-sightedness.

I started asking the doctors in December that I was concerned about her lack of a cry. They discovered that her left vocal chord was paralyzed which was caused from her heart surgery (after a horrible scope test). The surgery saved her life, but she will now spend the rest of her life with a paralyzed vocal chord. She will likely learn to speak, but it will likely be very hoarse and raspy. When she cries it’s silent.

Kaitlyn stopped wanting to eat. She would eat some by nipple (or from my breast), but then stop, so she continued to have to be supplemented via feeding tube. Eventually, weeks and weeks later, her due date came and went. It was now January. She’d been in the NICU for 3 months, and it didn’t look like she was coming home any time soon.

February 9th, 4 months after she was born, 1 month after she was due, we finally got to bring our little girl home with us. I can’t tell you the elation when it was me finally walking the halls with my car seat! I felt like I lived at the hospital for 4 months and we were finally taking our baby home with us. We were sent home with feeding tubes, tape for her skin, syringes, and instructions to set up 8 doctor appointments the day we got home. I suddenly realized that my dream of going home was being realized, but that nothing was “normal” about our homecoming.

I had been focusing for 4 longs months of our homecoming and never really thought about anything post NICU. No one ever prepared me for how hard things would be after we walked out of the hospital door.

November 2006 Kaitlyn is 13 months old now (10 months adjusted). Kaitlyn has had so many doctor visits since our release from the NICU it’s impossible to count. She had to have a 3rd surgery – to implant a feeding tube directly into her stomach in March, as she stopped wanting to eat anything orally. She lost her “suck” reflux, and has spent many months now of vomiting upwards of 20 times a day. She has horrible reflux and oral aversions.

She now is fed via a feeding tube for 10 hours straight at night, as well as 3 hours during the day. We go to weekly eating therapy, physical therapy, developmental specialists, and still visit the following doctors monthly: Eyes, lungs, urologist, ENT (for her vocal chord), pediatrician, neurologist. In the winter months she gets monthly shots that cost $2,000 each to help ward off RSV. My life is full of syringes, feeding tubes, IV poles, never-ending laundry, and nursing help so I can get a break to work.

She just celebrated her birthday last month, and even with all of the above, Kaitlyn is doing amazingly well. She’s absolutely beautiful! She just learned to crawl and can sit up on her own. Although she is definitely delayed, she is doing remarkably well. She hasn’t smiled AT ALL until just recently (Yes, I waited an entire YEAR for my daughter to smile and recognize me); she doesn’t make vocalizations, and is still socially very very delayed – she’s had a rough start of life. She now weighs 16 _ pounds - We are amazed with all her vomiting that she continues to gain.

Kaitlyn is the love of my life. I can honestly say that I am a very different person than I was before I entered down the path of motherhood. I think I’ve become much more compassionate, caring and understanding about how precious life is. And how much a miracle having a healthy baby truly is. My life was altered forever when I had my amnio on 7/26/05. I’ll NEVER forget that date as long as I live. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think of Kaitlyn’s sister Corinne, but I know that Kaitlyn has the most precious guardian angel looking out for her.

My entire story is online at: www.alizard.com Please spread the word about my preemie support group. Preemie mom’s need help in so many ways – Our life is different, our motherhood experience is different. So if you know of someone who needs some support, please have them contact me! Liz@aLizard.com (or if you need real estate help!)

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'Pregnant' Man In Trouble

If you are going to use an excuse to get off of work, this is not it!! Gentlemen...take note of the stupidy of one of your own.

A South African man is in trouble after he faked a sick note which said he needed time off work because he was pregnant.

Magistrates in Vereeniging, near Johannesburg, fined Charles Sibindana, 27, £70 for the forgery, reports the Sapa agency.

Sibindana stole a medical certificate from a health centre used by his pregnant girlfriend, but was apparently unaware only women consulted gynaecologists.

Magistrate Bruno Van Eeden jokingly warned Sibindana "not to walk around faking sick letters from gynaecologists"



Babies May Get Hooked On Smoking In Womb

I have never posted a positive article on smoking while being pregnant. That's because there aren't any. Researchers are always finding more side effects that are caused by maternal smoking. There are no benefits to anyone. Because I have never smoked before I cannot understand why someone would willing choose to put their child at risk.

Not only are the children of pregnant women who smoke more likely to develop a host of health and behavioural problems -- including asthma, attention deficit disorder and difficulty with reading and math -- they are also more likely to take up smoking and to do so at an early age, a new study finds.

The study examined the smoking patterns of children of 3,058 mothers who took part in a long-term study of pregnancy by the University of Queensland and Mater Misericordiae Mothers' Hospital in Australia. The mothers received prenatal care at the Brisbane hospital between 1981 and 1984.

Of the mothers, 53.1 per cent said they never smoked, 35.6 per cent smoked at some stage of pregnancy, and 11.4 per cent said they smoked before or after but not during pregnancy.

Researchers followed up with the children at age 21. Children whose mothers smoked while pregnant were nearly three times as likely to have started smoking before age 14 and to have become regular smokers than children whose mothers never smoked. The children were twice as likely to have started smoking after age 14 and to have become

Researchers said there is evidence that nicotine passes through the placenta and alters brain development in a way that changes how the body responds to nicotine later in life.

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New Moms Resume Smoking After Giving Birth



Baby's First Christmas Commemorative Coin Set

The Canadian Mint has produced many new collections of coins for Christmas this year.

The two that caught my eye were the 2006 Baby Coin Gift Set and 2006 Commemorative Holiday Coin Set. Both of these sets would be a great gift for baby's first Christmas.

The Baby Coin Gift Set includes a $2 coin, $1 coin, .50 cent piece, Quarter, Dime, Nickel, Penny and a soothing instrumental lullabies CD. The set features an authentic Royal Canadian Mint Sterling dollar coin with a teddy bear, stars and a half moon inset at the top of it. The packing includes a section where the babies information can filled in. $29.95 CAD available at the The Royal Canadian Mint.

The third edition of the 2006 Commemorative Holiday Coin Set features a special a 25- cent coin painted with Santa Claus and Rudolph, which will only be available in this set. The set includes a $2 coin, $1 coin, .50 cent piece, Quarter, Dime, Nickel and Penny. This set is great for any child. You could help there start a collection of coins and make this a yearly gift. $19.95 CAD available at The Royal Canadian Mint.


Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Boy Born With Fetus In His Stomach

There are more and more unusual stories about babies being born with anomalies. I am not sure if there are now more occurrences of unusual happenings or that we have more access to the information.

A boy has been born in Chile with a fetus in his stomach in what doctors said was a rare case of "fetus in fetu" in which one twin becomes trapped inside another during pregnancy and continues to grow inside it.

Doctors carried out a scan on the boy's mother shortly before she gave birth on Nov. 15 in the southern city of Temuco and noticed the 4-inch-long fetus inside the boy's abdomen.

It had limbs and a partially developed spinal cord but no head and stood no chance of survival, doctors said.

After the birth, doctors operated and removed the fetus from the boy's stomach. The boy, who has not been named, was recovering at Temuco's Hernan Henriquez hospital.

"It's very rare," said Maria Angelica Belmar, head of the hospital's neonatal wing, speaking of fetus in fetu cases.

"It occurs in only one in every 500,000 live births," she told Reuters, adding that the number of cases recorded worldwide was fewer than 90.



You Tube "Huggies Jerry McGuire Ad"

This is really cute!! I love Huggies commercials they are so well done. This one is a spoof of the Jerry Maguire type "Bad Day". Enjoy!!

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Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Mood Beams

These Ghosts make a great night light for your childs room or just a great companion that changes colour to your favourite song.

Vaguely reminiscent of Casper the ghost, (but at least twice as cute), they cycle through an array of cheerful, ambient colours casting pleasing little puddles of light about the room. They come with a variety of settings which allow you to control the speed at which they cycle through the colours (with one setting that's so fast it feels like looking at a strobe). They're also sensitive to sound, so if you sit them beside your radio or CD player they'll change colour in time to the beat of the music.
Available at gadgetshop.com for £9.95


Parents Leave 5 Children In Car To Go Christmas Shopping

A Toronto mother is facing charges of "leaving a child unattended" and charges are pending against the father after Police were called to a North York Mall on Monday evening.

The unnamed woman and her husband left their 5 children aged, 4 months, 2 years, 7 years and a set of twins that are 17 months in the car unattended for an hour while they did some shopping.

When a witness went into the mall at 7pm the children were in the car alone. At 8pm when she was done her shopping she noticed the children were still in the vehicle and called mall security.

The parents declined to be interviewed on camera, but only had to say that they are upset and disheartened by the allegations. It would be inconceivable for them to abandon their children.

It is illegal to leave a child under the age of 16 without adult supervision.

A court date has been set for January. The Children's Aid Society are also now involved.

You never want 5 children to be taken away from their parents at Christmas time, but leaving these children in the car on a cold night is not forgivable especially a 4 month old infant. It is one thing to run in quickly to get your takeout and leave your kids in the car, but not for a full hour in the middle of November.


Born Too Early: A Mom's Story Pt.1
By Liz McCarthy

This is a shortened version of a long, sad and sweet story of the birth of my twin daughters. The entire story can be found on my web blog: www.aLizard.com

I became pregnant with fraternal triplets after a long difficult road of trying to get pregnant. The trials of my infertility seem like a distant memory to me know, but I remember those days of hope despair and then finally success. This story is more about what happened after I was pregnant rather than getting pregnant.

I had 3 very good quality embryos and all 3 were implanted, and 2 weeks later (more shots the whole time) all 3 took!!!! I was finally pregnant, and with triplets!!!!

At week 8 of my pregnancy, I miscarried baby C. I was very sad, but after the misscary finished, I was finally pregnant, healthy with twins, feeling great, we had just bought a house, things were fabulous.

The start of the bad news…

I had my amniocentesis at 16 weeks, 6 days (1 day short of 17 weeks on 7/26/05). I got an amnio due to the fact that I was 39 years old. At the ultrasound prior to the amnio, everything looked GREAT! The babies were moving around, looked healthy from what can be seen from the u/s, their development was right on schedule for both of them, AND we found out the sexes. We are having 2 little girls!

The doc said that if he could, he would try to do the amnio with one needle stick instead of two. What this means is that he inserts the needle into one sac, out through the membrane that separates the twins, and into the other sac to retrieve her fluid first. He then pulls the needle back and removes fluid from the other sac. I asked about this, stating I was concerned that putting 2 holes into one sac seemed worse.

Well, that night, I started leaking amniotic fluid. Just a bit, which the doc had said could be a side effect. I went to sleep thinking about my two little girls and our move which was to take place in 2 days to our new house.

The next morning things got bad. I started leaking a lot, a whole lot. Basically my water broke.

My mom came up to help us with the move and take care of me. Brian came to the new house and set up a bed so that I could be immediately transferred from the bed at the old house to a bed in the new house. I entered into my first new house ever and went straight to the bedroom. That was my first glimpses of our house. I was very depressed. I continued to leak

I can’t believe this is happening to me.

We are told that 70% of women whose water breaks go into labor within 72 hours. This means that BOTH babies are at risk.

At 1 week past the amnio we go to our first u/s since the amnio and it’s not good. There is a small amount of fluid near the baby’s head of Twin A. Very small amount. Her heart rate was still normal, and she had fluid in her bladder and abdomen, signs which were also good The Doctor said that the baby needs fluid for her lungs to develop normally. We are told to go back home for more bedrest and that hopefully in another week it will heal. I can’t even walk out of the office as I’m crying so hard.

Bedrest means getting up only to use the bathroom. Even sitting up in bed is discouraged. I only sit up to eat. I am starting to loose it. I can’t believe I’m in this situation. I have two major thoughts, one is for the health of the babies obviously, and the other selfish I guess, but I have lost my freedom. I am normally so active and now I am stuck in bed, in my new house that I haven’t even seen. Brian has lost his freedom too. I can’t work. How am I going to cover the mortgage of the house we just bought? Being self-employed as a Realtor, if I don’t work, I don’t make money. We really started pressing the doctors to know what the outcome looked like if things didn’t heal. The outcome was not good. Birth defects for both babies were a very major concern.

The 3 options as were outlined to us were:

  • Abort (or kill, as the fetus would not leave my uterus, with a shot of chemicals to her heart) the ruptured twin.
  • Abort both twins.
  • Do nothing and see what happens.

The best outcome was for the sac to heal.

You might be saying, why would you abort both twins? Or even the one, as she seems to be growing ok? Well, this is a 2 for 1 deal. Although the twins are in two separate sacs (they are fraternal), they are both in my single uterus.

What I have is called pPROM. (Pre-term Premature Rupture of Membranes). I PROMEd at 17 weeks.

The single biggest fear from PROM is infection. Because the sac is ruptured, bacteria can easily find its way into the sac through the open membrane from the leaking fluid. Many, many cases of PROM pre-term labor are caused from infection. Pre-term labor would affect BOTH babies, no matter how healthy the one is currently. 24 Weeks is the earliest viability for pre-term babies, but the outlook is not good for that early delivery. One doctor told us there was only a 10% chance of not having problems at a 24 week delivery. At 28 weeks, things start looking better, but it would still be an uphill battle.

Factors affecting the PROM baby, should I hold out getting an infection are lung development issues. Babies need amniotic fluid to develop their lungs, as they actually “breathe” in the amniotic fluid. ; The major time of lung development for a fetus is between the weeks of 18-22. I ruptured at 17 weeks. Another fear of PROM is compression of limbs and face. The fetus usually swims and moves around in the amniotic fluid. There are many other complications like: prolapsed cords, placenta abruption that I won’t go into.

Our 2nd ultrasound 2 weeks after the PROM was even worst than the first. It showed no fluid what so ever around Twin A. All other signs were still ok.

The leaking that I’m experiencing is basically the baby’s urine. She gets the fluid and nutrients from my blood and umbilical cord, which she excretes. Normally this fluid is recirculated every few days, but with the sac being ruptured, it just spills out of me.

What are we going to do?

Well, after doing a lot of research I found a 4th option I felt, a way for the sac to heal which would make everything ok. We ended up flying to Florida to try an experimental procedure called an Amniopatch, which sadly didn’t work. Flying on bedrest – that’s another story.

I spent a total of 10 weeks on bedrest. I started having labor contractions at 8 weeks post PROM, I spent the day at the hospital, was given anti-contraction drugs and sent back home as my twins weren’t yet viable (I was 23 weeks pregnant).

At 25 weeks, I started again having contractions, and this time was immediately admitted. I was given horrible drugs to stop the labor, but the doctors were concerned that stopping my labor would possibly mask an infection, and preemies with infections were worse-off than preemies born earlier.

The contracts were slowed, and I spent 2 horrible weeks in the hospital during a labor strike. Eventually I started spiking a fever, sure signs of an infection and was sent immediately into surgery for my girls to be delivered by an emergency c-section.

The delivery

My beautiful, perfect twin daughters were born at 7:30 in the morning on October 4th.

I will NEVER forget the absolute terror I felt when I was wheeled into the delivery room. I kept telling the nurse who stayed by my side all night as my labor began that it was too soon, I wasn’t ready, the babies weren’t ready. ; My husband was at work as a fireman, and they waited just long enough for him to arrive at the hospital. They were 13 weeks early.

Corinne Margaret (named after our mothers) was born first and weighed 1 pound 14 ounces, Kaitlyn Elizabeth was born a minute later weighing a mere 1 pound 11 ounces. Corinne was our prom princess. Brian felt it was important to name our prom princess our mother’s names’ as she needed all the strength she could use.

As I was recovering in the post-surgery room, the doctor came to tell us the grim news, that Corinne’s lungs weren’t developed and that she was in very bad shape. I was wheeled into the NICU, they disconnected Corinne from everything and handed her to me. She was so tiny. She held on to my finger tight. She lived 3 short hours and took her last breath in my arms. This was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. I didn’t know it would be so hard.

I looked over at her sister Kaitlyn in her isolate, she too was so tiny. I wasn’t able to hold her, I reached out and touched her with my finger before I was wheeled away again. I ended up getting quite sick, I became septic with eColi and basically could have died myself. I spent 4 days in the hospital recovering, never once being allowed (or feeling well enough with my 105+ fever) to go see my surviving daughter. Brian gave me updates, we were told that it was likely she was going to need a heart surgery immediately.

When I was finally well enough to visit Kaitlyn the first thing I did was look to the empty space where Corinne isolette was. It was so empty , the tears rolled down my cheeks. When I first really looked at Kaitlyn, I was amazed how incredibly small, fragile and sick she looked. She was covered in wires and tape and I could hardly see her. She was under a billirubben light and had her head completely covered.

The Continuation: Born Too Early: A Mom's Story Pt.2

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Monday, November 27, 2006
Santa Shortage In Berlin

Every year when Christmas arrives, I guess we just take for granted that "Santa" will be in all of the malls and special events. You never actually think that maybe it's not easy to find people to fit the bill.

Berlin is facing an acute shortage of Santas just a month before Christmas, the head of a Father Christmas placement agency said Monday.

The director of Berlin's "Heinzelmaennchen" agency, which provides Santas to thousands of Berlin families every Christmas Eve, said he was having trouble getting enough qualified help.

"We prefer chubby men, of course, ideally with a real beard but we're not picky and take what we get," said director Rene Heydeck, whose official title is Ober-Weinachtsmann (chief Santa Claus).

The Santas, many of whom are students, earn 28 euros ($37) a visit for bringing a sack of presents provided by the parents into each home and handing them out. But Santas must also pay 45 euros for a costume and give the agency 15 percent of earnings.

"In a lot of families in Berlin it's a tradition that carries on even after the children grow older and stop believing," Heydeck said.

Each Santa visits an average of 10 to 12 families, although some have managed up to 20.



Are All Tricycles Created Equally?

Once your child reaches a certain age, there is no getting past it - you need a tricycle. There are quite a few choices out there for you when you do decide to make the jump.

When I was a kid you had two choices if you wanted a tricycle. The "Classic" or the "big wheels". Times have definitely changed. Here is a cross section of what is out there.

The Classic Radio Flyer

If you look back at pictures of yourself when you are 2 or 3 chances are you will see this tricycle. It is a true classic and has not changed much in the last 30 years because it was virtually perfect when it was initially designed. Some of it's features include:

• Classic tricycle styling • Chrome handlebars and fender • Sturdy steel construction • Durable steel spoked wheels with real rubber tires • Adjustable seat • 10" front wheel


The OKO Tricycle

This tricycle will turn heads when your child is playing with it. Extra large wheels with pliable tires, Ample padded saddle, and a sun shade - with a flexible and removable frame - which shelters both the sun and rain. A pushbar can be slipped into the frame. A 3 point safety belt, lever brake on the front wheel and 45° right and left topple-proof steering stop. All this guarantees even more safety. A pushbar and steering lock for adult control can be utilised for younger children and OKO also has a three point safety belt, lever brake on the front wheel and 45 degree right and left topple proof steering stop. $124.95

Rock, Roll 'n Ride Trike XL

This tricycle is awesome! It is made by Fisher Price and it incorporates 3 toys into 1. This trike transforms from a rocker into a tricycle into a two wheeler with a handle for mom/dad to steer. I love that you only need to buy one toy that will grow with you child. Unlike some of the bigger tricycles this one is good for babies 1 year and up. $35

Kettler HKS Air Happy Kettrike

This tricycle is definitely getting some buzz online. The Gold Seal winner of the Oppenheim Best Toy Award has a system for greater safety with or without a parent's supervision.

  • ON/OFF Switch - Patented 3 in 1 Auto-Freewheel™ - integrated automatic NO CABLES free-wheeling allows children to rest their feet on the pedals while parents guide them.
  • Patented Limited Turn Radius
  • Internal mechanism restricts front Frame wheel from turning more than 45 degrees left or right, reducing the danger of tipping.
  • Patented Parental Control® Steering Lock Steering Lock $170
  • Sky Princess Air Flow Tricycle

    For your little princess this tricycle is a replica of a classic that are currently selling for over $3000. Made for girls aged 3 and up.

  • 26" High
  • Beautiful Pink Powder Coat with Chrome insignias
  • Solid Rubber Tires
  • Adjustable Spring Seat
  • Working Light
  • Reflectors
  • Rubber Handle Grips
  • Sealed Ball Bearing
  • All Steel - Slight assembly required
  • Toy Safety Approved
  • Lead FREE Paint
  • $230

    Radio Flyer Twist Trike

    This tricycle remins me of toy my parents bought me when I was 3. It came apart and became a "big wheels" when I wanted something different to roll in! • Two trikes in one! • Twists from trike to chopper • Patented quick release twist n' lock mechanism for easy transformation • Adjustable seat back • Grows with your child • Durable molded construction • Controlled turning radius for stability


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    RECALL:Voluntary Product Withdrawal of Wet Wipes Products

    Rockline Industries announced that it has initiated a voluntary nationwide product withdrawal to the retail level of certain lots of its store brand wet wipes. The voluntary withdrawal is a result of routine product testing that detected the presence of a micro-organism known as Burkholderia cepacia (B. cepacia).

    According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), B. cepacia is a bacteria that can be found in soil and water. The CDC says "B. cepacia poses little medical risk to healthy people. However, people who have certain health problems like weakened immune systems or chronic lung diseases, particularly cystic fibrosis (CF), may be more susceptible to infections with B. cepacia. B. cepacia is a known cause of infections in hospitalized patients." Further information on B. cepacia can be found on the CDC website at: (http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dhqp/id_BcepaciaFS.html).

    "The well being of those who use our products is our top priority," said Alan Perlman, Rockline spokesman. "We are voluntarily removing this product from stores to maintain the highest possible standards of quality for our retail customers and their consumers. While the probability of a health risk is remote, we want to take every precaution. Consumers will receive a full refund or replacement."

    There have been no reports of illness related to this incident, according to Perlman. Only a small portion of the company’s wet wipes products are affected. Those products that are affected will likely have a bad odor described as sour milk.

    The company encourages consumers who have purchased wet wipes between Aug. 21 and Nov. 17, 2006 to check the lot code of the product. The lot code, which is not the same as a bar code, is typically found on the back label or side panel of the package and includes the word "Lot" followed by a series of numbers. Affected products have lot codes with the first 5 digits beginning at 06233 and ending at 06253. These numbers will be followed by either 0220197 or 0220693. No other lot codes or products are affected. Perlman recommended discontinuing use of the product and returning the package to the place of purchase for a full refund or replacement.

    Affected products were packed in multiple brands including the following items sold at Wal-Mart stores and Sam’s Club:

    Product Description

    Product Lot Code

    EQUATE Pop-Ups, Fragrance Free Baby Wipes, 80 Count Tub, Bar Code 071287859759

    LOT 06239 0220197XXXX LOT 06240 0220197XXXX

    EQUATE Pop-Ups, Fragrance Free Baby Wipes, 80 Count Refill, Bar Code 071287859780

    LOT 06250 0220197XXXX LOT 06251 0220197XXXX LOT 06253 0220197XXXX

    EQUATE Pop-Ups, Fragrance Free Baby Wipes, 160 Count Bag, Bar Code 071287856413

    LOT 06233 0220693XXXX LOT 06243 0220693XXXX

    MEMBER'S MARK Moist Wipes Pop-Ups, Fragrance Free, 720 Count Box, Bar Code 681131900607 or Bar Code 681131891264

    LOT 06237 0220197XXXX Thru LOT 06253 0220197XXXX

    For more information, contact Rockline Industries at 866-964-3322.

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    Sunday, November 26, 2006
    Preemie Profile: Sophia and Alina

    This dynamic duo, known as Alina and Sophia, came into the world on August 13th 2005, at 26 weeks gestation. Alina was the heavy weight born at 810 grams, while Sophia weighed in at 790 grams. Sophia came home two weeks before her due date, while Alina spent nine months and three weeks in the NICU. Sophia came out of prematurity relatively unscathed, while Alina has many battle scars that tell the story of an unbelievable journey of strength, courage and an amazing fight for life. Alina is ventilator dependent and has been diagnosed with severe bronchopulmonary dysplasia, ROP, and hydrocephalus. Sophia has been diagnosed with having too much energy. These super sisters have endured all, and still manage to be the happiest of heroines. They are changing the world, one villain at a time. The girls have shown us how beautiful life can be, through their super powers they have taught us to live, love, and laugh!



    Please do what you can to support an organization that is leading the campaign to reduce premature birth by supporting research and by educating the public and health care providers.

    Related Articles:


    Saturday, November 25, 2006
    Man Put Baby In Freezer To Break Fever

    A Canadian man, identified as Derrick Hardy, has been charged with criminal negligence and assaulting the infant, after the childs mom came home and found her baby in the freezer.

    Hardy, who could not figure out how to deal with his girlfriend's feverish 10-month-old daughter, put the baby into a freezer to cool her down, a local newspaper reported.

    The mother found the girl crammed into the freezer alongside ice cubes and hamburger meat. Hardy said he had left the door ajar but the mother said it had been closed when she returned.

    The child had only been in the freezer for about 40 seconds a court in the eastern province of Prince Edward Island heard.

    Hardy, 21, who admitted to police that he had no real parenting skills to deal with a sick child, said he had noticed the girl was very hot and put a cool cloth on her face, but this had no effect.

    He then carried the girl outside into the night air but, frustrated that this also did not work and worried she might drown if placed in a cold bath, he put the baby into the kitchen freezer. She was wearing only an undershirt.

    A local doctor said the mother had described her baby as "crying, sobbing and terrified." The child spent several days in hospital to recover from first- and second-degree freezer burns on her head and torso.

    Hardy has pleaded not guilty to the charges. The baby's grandmother now has custody of the girl.

    Where could this mother have needed to go so badly that she would leave her baby with this man. There is probably more to this story, that's why gramma now has custody.



    UnSafe Toys On Store Shelves

    Lately there have been toy recalls for lead in paint, small pieces detaching causing children to choke on them and toys that pose strangulation hazards. You would think that with all of the regulations the government implements, these toys wouldn't be able to make it to the shelves. I guess the regulations are not tough enough because at least once a week there is a recall issued on a popular toy that your child may have in their toybox.

    Despite decades-old laws requiring safer toys and other children's items, many hazardous toys are still being sold in stores across the country, according to the 21st annual toy safety survey released by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (U.S. PIRG).

    "While we can report substantial progress after more than two decades of advocacy on behalf of America's littlest consumers, U.S. PIRG's researchers still found trouble in toyland," said U.S. PIRG Research Director Alison Cassady, the author of the report.

    According to the most recent data from the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), almost 73,000 children under the age of five were treated in emergency rooms for toy-related injuries in 2005. Twenty children died from toy-related injuries last year.

    "Even one toy-related death is too many, because these deaths are preventable," said Cassady.

    The 21st annual U.S. PIRG Trouble in Toyland report offers safety guidelines for purchasing toys for small children and provides examples of toys currently on store shelves that pose potential safety hazards.

    Choking Hazards

    In 1979, the CPSC banned the sale of toys for children under three if they contain small parts. The 1994 Child Safety Protection Act required an explicit choke hazard warning on toys with small parts for children between three and six.

    Despite those regulations, U.S. PIRG found toys for children under three with small parts and toys with small parts for children under six without the required choke hazard warning.

    Children continue to choke on toys that meet the letter of the law. In September, Playskool recalled the Team Talkin' Tool Bench after two children suffocated when the toy's oversized plastic nails became lodged in their throats. U.S. PIRG found several toys on store shelves that have parts shaped like corks or these toy nails that could pose similar suffocation hazards.

    "Toddlers put everything in their mouths," said Cassady. "CPSC should make the small parts test more protective of children under three and consider warning labels for toys with parts shaped like corks or the toy nails that caused two children to suffocate," continued Cassady.

    Magnetic Toys

    Toymakers have started using powerful magnets in building toys and magnetic jewelry. If a child swallows more than one magnet, they can attract each other in the body and cause a bowel obstruction or life-threatening perforation. A little boy died last Thanksgiving and many others have had life-saving surgery after swallowing magnets from MEGA Brands' Magnetix toys.

    "Swallowing a magnet is not like swallowing a penny. Powerful magnets can wreak havoc inside the body," cautioned Cassady.

    MEGA Brands has modified the design of Magnetix and placed a label on the toy's packaging warning parents about the dangers of magnets. U.S. PIRG called on CPSC to require a warning label on all magnetic toys that tells parents to seek immediate medical attention if a child swallows magnets.

    Lead in Jewelry

    Children exposed to lead can suffer delayed mental and physical development or even death.

    In February, a four-year-old died of lead poisoning after he swallowed a bracelet charm that contained 99% lead. U.S. PIRG researchers went to just a few stores and easily found four items of children's jewelry that contain high levels of lead, ranging from 1.8% lead to 34% lead by weight.

    "We've known for decades that lead poses serious health risks to children, so it is unacceptable that consumers can still find lead-laden children's jewelry on store shelves," said Cassady.

    U.S. PIRG called on CPSC to enact and enforce mandatory requirements for jewelry manufacturers, retailers, and suppliers to ensure their products do not contain lead.

    Strangulation Hazards

    CPSC has decided to take another look at the dangers posed by water yo-yo balls after a five-year-old Bellevue, Washington boy almost suffocated last month when the toy's stretchy cord wrapped tightly around his neck several times. CPSC has recorded about 400 injuries to the eyes, face and neck since the water yo-yo ball came on the market three years ago.

    "CPSC should not wait until a child dies to protect children from the dangers posed by playing with this toy," said Cassady.

    U.S. PIRG called on CPSC to follow the state of Illinois's lead and ban the water yo-yo immediately.

    Cassady also reminded parents that the toy list in the U.S. PIRG report is only a sampling of the potential hazards on store shelves.

    "Shoppers should examine all toys carefully for hidden dangers before they make a purchase this holiday season," Cassady concluded.

    Our need to pay the lowest price for everything could also be the cause for some of these problems. A good percentage of these toys that cause problems, come from third world countries where quality is not their first priority. Good materials are not being used in order to keep costs down.

    Spend the time, do a bit of research and only buy the products that have been manufactured by reputable companies, not XYZ from China. The dollar store may be a great place for cheap wrapping paper and gift bags but it shouldn't be your source for you baby and child supplies.

    Europa Consumer Affairs website has a weekly listing of recalls from all over the world and it is shocking to see how many children's products are on their list . Not to mention, ladies, a staggering number of cheap cosmetics which have harmful side effects if used for a long period of time.


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    Friday, November 24, 2006
    Baby Born With Heart Outside Chest Has Surgery

    Modern day medicine can do so much now. Doctors sometimes have to use unconventional products to achieve the desired end result.

    Using a piece of Gore-Tex fabric to make their repairs, doctors performed corrective surgery on a baby born with his heart outside his chest, and said Wednesday that the youngster should be able to lead a close-to-normal life.

    Naseem Hasni underwent surgery to put his heart inside his chest hours after being delivered by Caesarean section Oct. 31 at Holtz Children's Hospital.

    He remained in critical but stable condition Wednesday.

    "He's not going to be able to play certain kinds of sports where a blow to the sternum to you and me wouldn't be a problem, but in him it would be. So I think some competitive sports are going to be out," said Dr. Eliot Rosenkranz, a cardiothoracic surgeon, "but he's going to be able to participate in other sorts of activities."

    He added: "Certainly the goal is as normal a childhood as he can achieve."

    Before the surgery, Naseem's heart looked like a peeled plum sitting atop his pink chest, with the aorta diving back underneath the skin. Nevertheless, the heart was beating away normally.

    During the six-hour operation, surgeons first wrapped Naseem's heart in Gore-Tex, then a layer of his own skin, to substitute for his missing pericardium, the sac that encloses the heart. The heart was then slowly eased inside his chest.

    The baby was born with an extremely rare congenital defect, ectopia cordis, in which the heart grows outside the body and the chest wall and sternum fail to develop. The defect was spotted in an ultrasound exam in late September after the mother, Michelle Hasni, 33, began feeling unusual movement from the baby.

    "He was having hiccups, but it was constantly and it was every day. I wasn't sure what the movement was," the Miami woman said.

    Naseem was delivered at 36 weeks, a few days early. Surgeons made a larger incision than normal to ensure that the heart would not be squeezed or touch any part of the womb. Other than the heart defect, Naseem had developed normally: He was 21 inches long and weighed 9 pounds, 2 ounces at birth.

    In a few weeks, Naseem will be fitted with a protective piece of plastic to wear over his chest. When he is about 6 months old, surgeons will graft pieces of his own ribs across his chest to create a sternum, or breastbone.

    While doctors had not initially been sure that Naseem would survive until Thanksgiving, he could be home with his family as early as Christmas, Rosenkranz said.

    Ectopia cordis occurs 5.5 to 7.9 times per 1 million live births, and the survival rate after surgery is less than 50 percent, the boy's doctors said.

    Being able to do sports is probably the last thing his parents are worried about. Making sure that their precious baby is able to wake up and smile at them is probably higher on their priority list. The miracles that are performed everyday are astonishing.



    Cool Kids Spaces

    The Cool Hunter has a full article of some of the coolest spaces designed for kids. The two places that impressed me the most were a book store in Beijing (below) and a ultra modern kids hospital in London (bottom).

    Beijing kids are the latest to be treated to some western style indulgence with Kids Republic, a children’s bookstore that transports it’s pint sized customers into a delightful fairytale world full of color and fantasy – complete with massive story telling screens and play areas. It’s haven for little imaginations in the heart of one of the biggest cities in the world.

    After spending as much time in the hospital with my son as I did, I wish they had this type of space for us to lounge in.

    This is officially the nicest hospital I have ever seen. North American architechs could learn a thing from the designers of this place.

    Instead of bribery through confectionary, this children's hospital in London has reinvented the concept of infirmary and transformed it into inFUNery. Adorned with cheerful, gently winding hospital corridors which lead to wards which look more like kids bedrooms, the hospital has mapped out themes for each of the wards. From the Seashell Ward located on Beach level one, through to the Sky level, each kids ward uses decor and medical equipment that is colorful, creative looking and non threatening.

    There are many more spaces...check out the site www.thecoolhunter.net


    Quick Sandwich Crust Remover

    Every mom knows that kids hate crusts. If you have a couple little ones or you look after other peoples kids, removing crusts can be tedious at lunch time. This great gadget is $5.95 and it works well with PB&J and Grilled Cheese.

    I found it at onestepahead.com


    Peg Perego "Vespa" Ride On Bike

    How freakin cute is this bike. A new ride on toy from Peg Perego. This scooter has everything a chic 3-7 year old could want.


    # Rechargeable battery powered (2 1/2 and 5 mph) # Operates on dirt, grass or sidewalks

    # Foot pedal accelerator and automatic brakes
    # Electronic engine sounds
    # Working headlight, horn and flashing hazard lights
    # Glove box in dash, rear box for play and storage
    # Vinyl capped non-skid wheels, removable training wheels, kickstand
    # Fully enclosed body, wiring, motors and gearboxes
    # 12-Volt rechargeable battery and recharger included
    # Ages 3 to 7; max weight 85 lbs

    Price: $269.95 at barebabies.com

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    Animals In The Womb

    The Daily Mail has an incredible article about animals in the womb. The pictures they have are an excerpt from a show that will be broadcast on the National Geographic Channel next month.

    An unborn elephant, tiny but perfect in every way. A dolphin swimming in the womb, just as it will have to swim in the ocean the moment it is born. An unborn dog panting. Each one amazing and now, thanks to these remarkable pictures, they can be seen for the first time.

    Using an array of technology, the images reveal what until now has been a secret - exactly how animals develop in the womb. They were created by the same team who in 2004 showed how human embryos "walk in the womb".

    Using a combination of three-dimensional ultrasound scans, computer graphics and tiny cameras, the team were able to show the entire process from conception to birth.

    "These kind of images from inside animals have never been seen before," said Jeremy Dear of Pioneer Productions, who made the film.

    "We worked with dozens of zoos and animal sanctuaries across the world. There were a lot of different challenges - recording a dolphin is very different from an elephant, for instance.

    "Animals were trained to sit still near the scanners and we also inserted cameras into the womb via the elephant's rectum-But it has been worth it. It one sequence we follow an elephant developing. When it is finally born, there is not a dry eye in the house.

    "The images in the film are a testament to the ingenuity and patience of the production team led by Yavar Abbas and Dr David Barlow, who worked with some of the world's leading vets to obtain these pictures."

    Researchers used scans to track elephant calves developing for almost two years in the womb - the longest gestation period of all mammals. It shows at 16 weeks the elephant foetus starting to look more like an elephant as the trunk develops. At almost a year, the trunk is longer than the legs, and by 14 months, the characteristic elephant ears are visible. They will eventually grow to almost two feet across to help regulate the body temperature of the fullymature-elephant. At birth, he will weigh nearly 260lb and be able to take his first steps in minutes.

    Animals closer to home were also studied. A golden retriever foetus is shown exhibiting some of the same behaviour as family pets, panting with its tongue out, while still in the womb.

    Programme makers also reveal the moment at eight weeks when a baby dolphin learns to swim while in the womb. During the next few weeks, it develops flippers, a tail and a blowhole before being born after a year, and must be able to quickly swim to the surface to take its first breath of air.

    Experts also found that at 24 days, the dolphin embryo develops tiny leg-like buds, which then disappear over the next two weeks.

    After 11 weeks, the dolphin embryo's fins display bone structures resembling human hands, which experts believe may show that dolphin ancestors were land dwellers.

    I think these shots are amazing! I can't believe it has taken them this long to get such good photographs of animals in the womb, 3D/4D has been available for years. I can't wait until this special airs. Watch for it in a month.


    You Never Know How Good Your Day Will Be Pt.2

    On Tuesday I posted a story about Ellen Degeneres and Former President Clinton. I wasn't able to track down the video that went with the story because it hadn't been uploaded to You Tube yet.

    Here is the video of the events that led up to my story. Former President Clinton is a genuine man and you can see that in the clip. He doesn't need to pick up the child - he wants to!! Looks like someone wants to be a grampa.

    Related Articles:

    You Never Know How Good Your Day Will Be

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    Thursday, November 23, 2006
    You Tube "PMS Survival Guide"

    This video is hillarious. A parody of a 1950's educational and goverment propaganda video. Some tips for men on handling their significant others during "Aunt Flo's" monthly visit.

    Were not that bad are we??


    X-Ray Vision

    This is a really cute maternity shirt. Let's face it every ultrasound picture looks the same so realistically this could be your baby on your belly.

    Let 'em see right through you with this sonogram image. There is a baby in there, after all.

    I found it at mommygoround.com $35 U.S.


    Trunki Suitcases Great For Travelling With Small Children

    Trunki is the new childrens suitcase that is making travel with your kids a little bit easier. Not only is it bright and fun to look at, this case is also functional. Trunki's generous dimensions are 46 x 20 x 30.5 cm (18" x 7.9" x 12") and holds a massive 18 litre capacity! It is light-weight at only 1.7 KG, 3.8 Pounds and when your child gets tired of walking, they can ride on the back like a toy car. It also features a strap that will make it easier for you child to pull their own suitcase through the airport.

    We have built Trunki out of the same plastic that adult suitcases are made with, so he is very durable and can be ridden by several toddlers. We recommend you don't exceed 50KG of load and that you don't check Trunki at the check in desk.

    I want one of these cases for my son. We are taking him on vacation in February and this suitcase may keep his attention while we are in the busy airport. Not to mention, it will hold all of the stuff we will probably need to keep him occupied on the plane.

    Available at Trunki.co.uk for $24.99£

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    Turkey Calorie Calculator

    Happy Thanksgiving to everyone in the U.S. We had our thanksgiving a month ago, but I could sure go for more turkey today.

    USA today has a Turkey Calorie Calculator on their website that gives you an idea of how much exercise you will have to do, after eating the big meal.

    Click here to have the turkey calculate the damage.


    Wednesday, November 22, 2006
    I'm a Superhero by Daxton Wilde and Sherry Wilde

    This is an inspirational book written by Daxton and his mom Sherry while he was undergoing chemotherapy and radiation treatments for a brain tumor.

    In May of 2000, Scott and Sherry Wilde rushed their four-year-old boy, Daxton, to Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City because of severe head pains. Doctors discovered a large cancerous tumor in Daxton’s brain and diagnosed him with a medullobalstoma. Daxton bravely battled cancer and never complained about any procedure or treatment.

    During his illness, Daxton spent much of his treatment at home with his family where he worked on writing and illustrating his book, I’m a Super Hero, with the help of his mother. I’m a Super Hero is Daxton’s account of his life and experiences during his cancer treatment. Daxton’s story demonstrates his unfailing optimism and bravery.

    Available at Amazon.com for $11.66 cad

    I am always amazed at the strength children have when they are going through something life changing. Writing this book was probably a good way for him to keep his mind off of all the procedures being done.

    The proceeds from the sale of this book originally went to print more copies, fund cancer research, and donate translated copies of I’m a Super Hero to children internationally. Now, the foundation works with hospitals and doctors’ offices to identify and help children with cancer and their families by providing assistance to ease the financial burdens associated with treating cancer.

    Daxtons' site: www.daxtonwilde.org


    Drunken School Bus Driver Asks To Finish Run

    This story is every parents nightmare. When you put your kids on the bus in the morning, you put your faith in the fact that the driver is safe and of course sober.

    A whole bus of innocent children were being chauffeured around by a driver who is 13 times over the legal alcohol limit. After being pulled over by the police in Australia, all he could say was "Can I finish my run, at least to drop these kids off?"

    Is this guy for real? Finishing the run is the least of your worries!!

    A country court in New South Wales state was told 50-year old David Stack had a blood alcohol level of 0.26, which is 13 times the legal limit for a bus driver, when he was stopped on November 7.

    The court was told two adult passengers had alerted police after Stack's bus was speeding and swerving across the road.

    Stack, who pleaded guilty to the drunk driving charge, said he regretted his actions and had apologized to the children on the bus at the time.

    Now unemployed, Stack will be sentenced in February.


    Tuesday, November 21, 2006
    Victoria Staten Baby Carrier

    This is a very unique baby carrier. It looks like it is made from a leather or suede, but in fact, it is a luxuriously soft and washable fabric.

    Victoria Staten is a mom who was inspired into designing her own line of baby products after having a hard time justifying spending thousands of dollars on baby necessities that were less than appealing. There were very few, if any products that she needed that she wanted to buy.

    Her goal is to provide sophisticated consumers with products that combine superior functionality, with a sense of style that is uniquely attuned to each consumer's lifestyle. She wants to ensure that everyone she touches enjoys the experience. Whether it is an employee, a vendor, or a consumer, her goal is to make sure that each and every one of them has a positive experience when touched by the brand.

    This carrier has:

    Easily adjustable harness fits a variety of body shapes and sizes
    Lumbar support
    Feels natural on the body
    Diaper bag attachment capabilities
    Easy entry and exit for baby changing
    Front or hip weight bearing load

    Fits newborn weighing 8lbs to infants weighing up to 25 lbs

    Price: $275


    U.S. Caesarean deliveries rise

    In August I posted a study that found a Caesarean delivery more than triples a woman's risk of dying in childbirth compared to a vaginal birth. The rate of Caesarean births has increased again in 2005.

    The Caesarean delivery rate for U.S. women hit a record high in 2005, spiking by nearly 50 percent in a decade, while teen births fell to a new low and births by unmarried mothers rose, according to government data.

    Close to a third of all babies born in the United States -- 30.2 percent in 2005, up from 29.1 in 2004 -- were delivered surgically in a procedure also commonly called a C-section.

    This marks a 46 percent increase in the Cesarean delivery rate since 1996 and continues an upward trend dating back three decades, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics, or NCHS.

    The rate stood at about 5 percent in 1970. C-sections are favored when doctors believe vaginal delivery could cause medical complications, but have become more and more commonplace for what would be considered normal births.

    The increase comes amid a controversy over whether some women are opting for medically unnecessary C-sections out of convenience and whether some doctors are performing them because they fear being sued if they do not.

    While in the past older mothers were more likely to have a C-section, NCHS statistician Fay Menacker said Caesarean deliveries were increasing for women of all ages and races.

    The World Health Organization has recommended C-section rates no higher than 15 percent of births.

    I cannot understand why doctors allow scheduled C-sections. Unless there is a predetermined condition that doesn't allow for a vaginal birth these women should not be allowed to decide when the baby is going to arrive.

    Related Articles:

    French Study: An Increase In Maternal Deaths After C-Section
    Elective Caesarean Sections



    RECALL:Mattel’s Polly Pocket Magnetic Play Sets

    The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with Mattel, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

    Name of Products: Polly Pocket dolls and accessories with magnets

    Units: About 2.4 million play sets (an additional 2 million play sets were sold worldwide)

    Importer: Mattel Inc., of El Segundo, Calif.

    Hazard: Tiny magnets inside the dolls and accessories can fall out undetected by parents and caregivers. The magnets can be swallowed, aspirated by young children or placed by a child in their nose or ears. When more than one magnet is swallowed, the magnets can attract each other and cause intestinal perforation, infection or blockage, which can be fatal. Aspiration to the lungs requires immediate surgery. Magnets placed in the nose or ears can cause swelling and be difficult to remove.

    Incidents/Injuries: CPSC is aware of 170 reports of the small magnets coming out of these recalled toys. There were three reports of serious injuries to children who swallowed more than one magnet. All three suffered intestinal perforations that required surgery. A 2-year-old child was hospitalized for seven days and a 7-year-old child was hospitalized for 12 days. An 8-year-old child was also hospitalized.

    Description: The recalled Polly Pocket play sets contain plastic dolls and accessories that have small magnets. The magnets measure 1/8 inch in diameter and are imbedded in the hands and feet of some dolls, and in the plastic clothing, hair pieces and other accessories to help the pieces attach to the doll or to the doll’s house. The model number is printed on the bottom of the largest pieces on some of the play sets. Contact Mattel if you cannot find a model number on your product to determine if it is part of the recall. Polly Pocket magnetic play sets currently on store shelves are not included in this recall.

    Polly Pocket Magnetic Play Sets Item Number
    Polly Pocket!™ Polly Place™ Hangin’ Out House™ B2632
    Polly Pocket!™ Polly Place™ Treetop Clubhouse™ B3158
    Polly Pocket!™ Spa Day™ B3201
    Polly Totally!™ Polly Place™ Totally Tiki Diner™ B7118
    Polly Pocket!™ Quik-Clik™ Boutique G8605
    Polly Pocket!™ Quik-Clik™ City Pretty Playset H1537
    Polly Pocket!™ Quik-Clik™ Sporty Style Playset H1538
    Polly Pocket!™ Totally Zen™ Playset H3211

    Sold at: Discount department stores and toy stores from May 2003 through September 2006 for between $15 and $30.

    Manufactured in: China

    Remedy: Consumers should immediately take these recalled toys away from children and contact Mattel to arrange for the return of the sets and to receive a voucher for a replacement toy of the customer’s choice, up to the value of the returned product.

    Consumer Contact: For additional information contact Mattel at (888) 597-6597 anytime, or visit the firm’s Web site at www.service.mattel.com