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Sunday, February 28, 2010
11-Year-Old Boy Delivers His 28 Week Brother

An 11-year-old Australian boy really stepped up to the plate after his mom mom went into labor prematurely and wasn't able to make it to the hospital.

When Amanda Sullivan began having contractions at the family’s home last Wednesday, the only one able to help was her son Rohan.

After some on-the-phone guidance from a 911 operator, the heroic 6th grader delivered his baby brother, who arrived still in his protective “sack”. With further instructions, Rohan was able to cut the sack open during in a delicate operation and then wrap the baby up until professional help was able to arrive.

Arriving at just 28 weeks weighing 800 gms, baby Ashton was transferred to Nambour General Hospital where his twin sister Indi was delivered by caesarean a short time later. She tipped the scales at 700 grams.

Because they need more specialized care, Ashton and Indi were sent to the Royal Brisbane Hospital where they were listed in a stable condition.

Amanda remained in Nambour hospital last night but was expected to be taken to Brisbane to join her babies soon.

Rohan was been praised for his maternity work.

"How difficult and scary it must be for an 11-year-old to come face-to-face with his mother having twins - and not only twins, but early twins," Australian Medical Association spokesman Gino Pecoraro said.

"When he finishes high school and grows up and does medicine, if he wants to be an obstetrician, get him to give us a call, and we will get him on the training program," Pecoraro promised.

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Maggie and Ramona Enjoy a Winter Stroll in Brooklyn

Now that the snow has stopped, Maggie Gyllenhaal and daughter Ramona were spotted enjoying a Winter stroll in Brooklyn today.

Maggie and Ramona Enjoy a Winter Stroll in BrooklynMaggie and Ramona Enjoy a Winter Stroll in Brooklyn

During an interview the indie actress, who was recently nominated for an Oscar for her role in Crazy Heart, spoke about how she balances work and motherhood.

“I had about five movies that came out while I was pregnant and, although I was nauseous at the beginning, I was able to promote them,” she explains. “Then Ramona was born and I couldn’t even pick up the phone to do an interview. I couldn’t take my eyes off her. Having an infant is so hard and complicated. It’s very intense.

“I only worked about 15 days over seven months on The Dark Knight, which was manageable at a time when my focus was on my daughter. But Crazy Heart was offered to me when Ramona was nearly two and I had this feeling that I needed a little something for me. It was like, ‘OK, I want to do some work. I’m a woman and an actor as well as a mother.’”

{INFphoto.com}


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Mega Brands Introduces Their New 2010 Collection

New for 2010, Mega Brands has some great developmental toys for kids starting with their Mega Bloks pre-school collection, which caters to little ones 1+.

Noteworthy additions include 2 new ride-on and then build off of trucks, a play and go train, a pull along train, Build and Play Kitchen and Workbench and, my favorite toy from the new collection - the Thomas & Friends train set.

Thomas & Friends Train Set

This set is great because it consists of 6 sets, which can be used together to build a big Thomas world. Compact and easy to assemble, this set uses the transport/storage tub to help kids build their train up high, giving it the drops needed to create momentum.


Cranky the Crane-1 Busy Day at the Quarry Adventure on Misty Island

This year, Mega continues their trend of keeping everything compact. Many of their toys can be used to build off of and played with as well. Both the Kitchen and Workbench can be created right off of the box they came in.

Pull Along Musical Pirate ship Build n Play Kitchenette Build n Play Workbench Play n Go Musical Train

To Celebrate Dora's 10th anniversary Mega Brands will be introducing 8 building set that will feature play scenes like Dora's house, a pirate adventure and a train.


Pirate AdventurePlay Date AdventureRoller Coaster Adventure


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An Expectant Rebecca Gayheart Pampers Her Pooches

A casually dressed Rebecca Gayheart was spotted getting her two dogs primped at the doggy spa yesterday.

An Expectant Rebecca Gayheart Pampers Her PoochesAn Expectant Rebecca Gayheart Pampers Her Pooches

The actresses husband, Eric Dane recently revealed to People Magazine that he's thrilled at the prospect of being father to a little girl.

"It just makes sense that I'm having a girl ... I don't know what it is, but I am excited it's a girl," he told the Magazine.

When asked if they had a name picked out, Rebecca replied:

"We have a couple of names, but we're going to wait and meet the baby before we name [her]."

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Saturday, February 27, 2010
Jim Carrey Becomes Grandfather, Tweets Picture

At the young age of just 47, Jim Carrey has a new role - Grampa! The actor's daughter Jane and her husband Alex Santana welcomed their first child, a boy, yesterday in Los Angeles.

Jackson Riley Santana, arrived at 12:28 a.m. weighing in at 7 lbs., 11 oz, measuring 20 inches long.

Tweeting about the new arrival, the proud new granddad posted a baby pic and wrote,


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Born Too Early: Meet 24 Weeker Catherine!

Starting back in November for the March of Dimes Prematurity Awareness Month some parents who had babies prematurely offered to tell their stories to create awareness about his important cause. Because there are still so many stories to tell, we have decided to continue introducing you to these amazing children. Children with many ranges of issues from their premature birth and sometimes including the sad stories where the child did not survive. Remember, prematurity can happen to anyone, anytime.

To kick this off, our next profile is that of a beautiful little girl named Catherine. Catherine was born on August 10th 2008 at 24 weeks and 2 days weighing a mere 480 grams.

Mom Deb is one of the few who ever really find out why they had their babies early. She had pre-eclampsia. (a condition characterized by pregnancy-induced high blood pressure, protein in the urine, and swelling (edema) due to fluid retention.) At her 24-week checkup, her OB saw that her blood pressure was sky high and Deb also had protein in her urine. Deb was then sent to labor and delivery right away, where additional tests confirmed preeclampsia. She was hospitalized immediately. Catherine was born four short days later.

Catherine was in a very high-tech incubator for about 12 weeks after she was born. She was intubated (on a respirator) for 8 weeks, then on the next step of CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) for about a week before just switching to oxygen.

The first time I saw her, I didn't notice anything else around her, but as the days went by I became acutely aware of all the machinery and monitors she was hooked up to, and I learned what each one meant and how to read it. I became very well-versed in medical terminology as far as it related to my daughter. Her room had 9 other beds in it.
The NICU had several rooms, depending on level of care needed for the babies. Catherine was in the highest level, where most NICU babies go when they are first born. Mom Deb was with her every day, spending about 6-8 hours at the hospital. The nurses who Deb says were fabulous, wanted her as involved as much as a mom can be in a hospital setting. They did hands on assessments every three to four hours, and during that time Deb was the one who would take her temperature and change her diaper.

Deb got to hold Catherine for the first time at 18 days old. After that it was about once a week. It is very difficult to arrange holding a baby while they are intubated on a ventilator. A respiratory therapist is involved to make sure the tube doesn’t move- all very stressful!

Once Catherine was just on oxygen (about 9 weeks after birth), mom was able to hold Catherine more frequently. Also exciting, was that once she was on oxygen she could start wearing clothes. At this time even the preemie outfits were falling off of her, but it was something to help Deb gain a sense of normalcy.

Catherine was weighed every evening and at that time she would change her clothes for the day. Mom did help with her first bath, but didn't get to bathe her much during her entire stay.

On December 23, one month after her due date, Deb was able to take Catherine home.

Santa must have thought I was a good girl that year, because I couldn't have asked for a better present!
Catherine spent a total of 136 days in the NICU.
On the chart the nurses listed "DOL" (days of life). For some reason that was startling to see that....I guess with a full-term baby, you go home and after a week or so you just switch to weeks/months. "Days of Life" doesn't come up with a full term baby. With micropreemies, even after the hospital we have two ages we refer to: gestational vs. actual age, at least until they are 2 years old.
As for lasting effects from prematurity, Deb says that Catherine has issues but does not know how long lasting they will be.

Like most mircopreemies, Catherine has chronic lung disease. Basically, this means her lungs sound fine most of the time but because they were not fully developed, she will have difficulty recovering from the flu, colds, etc.. If she catches the flu or RSV, it is likely she will have to be hospitalized and possibly put on a respirator if her lungs aren't strong enough. It's something I won't know until she gets sick. Then we will know just how strong her lungs really are.

Catherine has a cyst in her larynx as a result of being intubated for 8 weeks (the irritation caused the cyst). Fortunately it does not affect her breathing or eating functionality, but it is pressing on her vocal chords. Any sound/laugh she makes sounds very raspy, almost like she has a cough. Her excited sound is similar to the sound she makes right before she cries... so you would have to look at her face to see what emotion she is feeling. We had this cyst removed last summer, but it grew back (always a possibility). Right now the ENT is monitoring it, and we hope to wait until Spring to have surgery again. (Again, because of her lung disease nobody wants her near a hospital for fear of contracting H1N1 or another flu).

Catherine came home on oxygen 24/7. In July she switched to oxygen just at night.

Catherine is 15 months actual, and is 11 1/2 months adjusted (which is how we measure micropreemies at first). She only weighs 14 1/2 lbs and wears 6-month (and some 9-month) clothes. She certainly doesn't look like she's a one-year old! She used to have reflux but that was managed with medication and seems to be a non-issue now. She does however have some eating issues. She does not have a feeding tube and for now the Ped and GI have backed off on that option.

Catherine's motor skills and growth milestones are extremely delayed. Her fine motor skills are that of a 6-7 month old. Her gross motor skills are more like an 8-month old. She has no teeth yet, and she hasn't started talking or walking. She is doing a commando-style crawl, and just recently she got up on her knees for the first time. In November 2009 she sat up by herself twice.

Catherine sees an Occupational Therapist two times a week, a Physical Therapist once a week and an Infant Developmental Specialist once a week. She does make progress so all the experts expect her to catch up, but she is on her own timeline.

I suspect I really won't know about any lasting effects for a few years yet. For example, learning disabilities and autism-like symptoms are very common in micropreemies, but it is too early for such a diagnosis.

If Deb had one piece of advice for a new preemie parent, it would be this:

I actually gave this advice to a new Dad who had just seen his daughter for the first time (his wife was still in recovery). They didn't know if their daughter was going to pull through or not. First of all, congratulations (many people are afraid to say that when your baby is in the NICU). Enjoy every moment you share with her. Celebrate any little bit of progress she makes. Yes it is scary but keep in mind she is a lot stronger than she looks. Try to look at her, not all the tubes and wires hooked up to her. She'll have to stay here for a while but you are her parents and she already knows that. Get as involved with her care as you can. She is your baby, again celebrate everything about her! Oh, and don't be afraid to ask questions, don't be shy about her care. (Their daughter pulled through and was discharged shortly after Catherine. After that first night, I never saw the dad without a smile on his face!)
I asked Deb to describe Catherine in one word and she said this:
Heroic. Miracle. Amazing. Take your pick!
Don't worry Deb, we know how hard it is to describe your child who has overcome all odds in just ONE word! Catherine is definitely heroic, amazing and most of all a miracle!

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Friday, February 26, 2010
Bloom Putty - Fun For Kids and Parents

I remember playing with putty when I was a kid. Squeeze it, stretch it, smash it in my hands. It was tons of fun. Bloom Putty brings back that childhood fun, in a whole new way!

Bloom Putty - Fun For Kids and Parents

Bloom putty is gluten, wheat, casein, dairy, corn, soy, nuts and latex free. This means it is safe for practically everyone to use and enjoy. There is no risk of an allergic reaction from playing with it in your hands. The putty is also scented with organic, non-toxic scents. No need to worry about getting toxic chemicals on your hands. And the best part is that the scents stay on your hands to give you a relaxing aromatherapy treat.

Out of the five human senses, smell has the most influence on mood, behavior, and memory. We react to a scent according to our opinion of it, be it good or bad. Choosing a pleasant scent for your putty means that, as you play with it, the aroma has an immediate, positive impact on your emotions, mood, and behavior.

Working with putty is a natural stress reliever just by stretching, breaking, squishing, pulling and playing around with it! Keep some on your office desk, purse or at home so you can take it out whenever you need a lift!

Bloom putty is pure fun for people of all ages. You can squeeze it, stretch it, twist it, smash it, wrap it, and even bounce it. The putty will not dry out or crumble away because of it's silicone based nature.

Bloom Putty - Fun For Kids and Parents

There are fourteen scents available, as well as unscented for those who prefer it. Each scent is from natural oils, not chemicals. You can buy Bloom Putty in every scent from buttered popcorn to melon to peppermint, and many more! This putty is perfect for burning off some stress and fighting boredom. Though, you will probably have to buy one for your kids too! - Summer, Staff Writer

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Japanese Baby Gear Brand Aprica Now Available in the US

Japanese baby gear brand Aprica makes its debut at exclusive specialty retailers in the New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco metro areas. Featuring simple, purposefully designed products, Aprica offers products that are useful for parents with an active lifestyle.

Initial offerings include cadence™($249), the super lightweight baby stroller, and the Aprica side carrier($60), the hands-free hip carrier that maintains baby’s proper hip alignment. presto™, the ultra-slim profile stroller with amazing maneuverability, will join the line up mid-year.

Aprica cadence strollerAprica side carrier

Aprica products have been popular overseas for their functionality and sharp appearance. Every product is designed for the demands of real life, with touches like washable pads and quick-release folding mechanisms.

No word available yet on specialty models like the Roberto Cavalli Collection introduced last year.


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Tiffani Thiessen Talks Pregnancy and Cravings At Vanity Fair Event

With only three months left before her first baby arrives, White Collar star Tiffani Thiessen is "feeling great" – and differently about her diet.

"I was a vegetarian for many, many, many years and all of a sudden I started to crave red meat," Thiessen told People last night at USA network and Vanity Fair bash in New York. "Crazy enough, I had a steak before I left tonight and I would never have eaten one before. One day I just woke up and craved meat."

In addition to steaks, Tiffani, is also enjoying foot rubs from her husband, Brady Smith.

"He rubs my feet, my shoulders and he always gets anything for me even if I'm all hormonal," she says. "I have the best husband and he's a sweetheart."

Tiffani also revealed that she knows the sex of the baby, but that's top secret – at least publicly.

"I couldn't wait to find out," Thiessen, who is keeping the baby's sex private, says. "Are you kidding? My husband I were way too excited to wait. We needed to know right away."
Advantages of her new curves?
"The best part is not having to suck in your stomach anymore when wearing a tight dress. I love it!"
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‘Gender Disappointment’, the New Sob Story for Some Mothers

In the US some 30,000 babies are still born annually and almost half a million are preterm deliveries who have to go through complex treatments to survive another day. Many babies cannot see right from birth, many cannot speak and many have to struggle remembering their own names. While parents of all these children try to cope up with the situation and try raising a happy family, there are also a few parents who are disappointed because their child is healthy but not of the gender they desired.

In a matter that has come out of the closet through internet forums, websites and discussions, many women who have had a daughter, feel the need to have a son and the vice versa when they are again expecting. The phenomenon seems to be so common nowadays that psychiatrists are calling it by the name of ‘Gender Disappointment’.

According to these women, though they feel guilty for the negative feelings towards an unborn child or a child born of an undesirable gender, they feel the need to complete and balance their family is immense.

'I cried in bed for two days,' writes one woman, a mother of two boys, upon discovering her third child was also a boy. Another mother of three boys says, 'I honestly don't think I'll ever get over not having a girl. I think about it every day, and the disappointment never goes away. I will carry this agony with me for the rest of my life.'

For some women this yearning for a specific gender child is so strong that they even resort to measures like keeping a complicated ovulation chart, having ‘gender specific’ nutrients in their diet and also asking their partners to have intercourse on specific days of the ovulation calendar. One of the most popular but still unsure methods used is the Shettles method.

The only way to ensure the sex of a baby is pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD), which involves creating embryos via traditional IVF and then implanting only embryos of a certain sex. But this method too is recommended when there is a risk of transmitting a disease to a specific gender child.

From wishing to dress up a girl after having only boys to hoping a son will play ball better with dad than a daughter, the reasons women give for such a desire is varied. Many keep on attempting even when they are close to menopause and already have 5 to 8 kids.

In a time and age when some mothers fight to bear just one healthy child, few mothers it seems are still finding it difficult to count their blessings and keep on harping dreams of a different gender child. - Atula, Staff Writer

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New Test Allows Men to Check Sperm Count at Home

Men who would like to discreetly test their sperm count will be able to do so with a home test that will soon be available in Europe, and is undergoing Food and Drug Administration (FDA) review for marketing in the US.

Dr. John C. Herr of the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, who helped develop the new test, told Reuters Health the test targets couples who have been trying to get pregnant for a few months, but aren't ready to seek professional help.

The test helps couples sort out if the male is a factor in the infertility "and to do that in privacy with some cost savings," he said. "The product will retail for about $25. That's a lot cheaper than going in and having a full semen analysis."
Sperm counts of 20 million per milliliter of semen and above are considered normal. The test will tell a man whether or not his sperm count meets this cutoff, and if it doesn't whether he has a severely low sperm count (below 5 million sperm per milliliter). "It basically tells the man how deep the infertility is," Dr. Herr explains. "If both strips are negative it's important that they then seek medical treatment for the infertility."

For women to check if they are pregnant or close to ovulation they only need to dip a test stick in their urine and wait a few seconds, the SpermCheck Fertility test requires a few more steps.

Users let the semen rest for 20 minutes, collect 100 microliters using a pipette, and mix the semen with a detergent-containing substance known as a buffer, which releases the SP-10 protein from the sperm. Users then put a few drops of this mix into the two sample wells. Within seven minutes, the test results will appear in test windows above the wells.

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Nicole Richie Smooches Her Little Man At The Eiffel Tower

While out sightseeing Paris today, Nicole Richie showed off a gorgeous picture of her and son Sparrow sharing an adorable moment.

Nicole Richie and Sparrow at The Eiffel Tower, Paris

Nicole and her family are overseas to promote her new clothing line Winter Kate.

Winter Kate – the middle names of Nicole’s daughter Harlow-features pieces that range from edgy: the little sexy leather jacket – to romantic: slip dresses and camisoles. The Spring 2010 collection reflects her love of ethereal flowing clothes: easy to wear, simple, yet romantic and feminine at the same time.

Judging from the look on Sparrow's face, he's done this before - many times. What a cutie!

SOURCE


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Thursday, February 25, 2010
Learning Curve’s newest innovation: The Thomas Wooden Railway™ Early Engineers Line

Last week at Toy Fair Learning Curve® debuted an exciting new expansion to the Thomas Wooden Railway line. Now fans as young as 18 months can enjoy the fun and discovery of wooden railway play with the Thomas Wooden Railway Early Engineers Line.

The classic train system parents have loved for generations featuring Thomas & Friends has a new line designed especially for beginning engineers! Designed to captivate toddlers’ imaginations while bringing train play within their grasp, the Thomas Wooden Railway Early Engineers Line features larger engines that are perfect for small hands as well as track and destinations that fit into simple molded layouts so everything stays securely in place.

Here are a few photos:

Thomas Wooden Railway Early Engineers Busy Day on Sodor Set Thomas Wooden Railway Early Engineers Roundabout Station Set Thomas Wooden Railway Early Engineers Rock and Roll Quarry Set Thomas Wooden Railway Early Engineers James Engine


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Bugaboo Introduces The New 2010 Bee!

It was announced today that Bugaboo, the modern mobility company, will launch a new Bugaboo Bee to be available for sale April 2010. Building off the success of the original Bugaboo Bee, the compact yet complete stroller known for its sleek design and smooth ride, Bugaboo debuts the new Bugaboo Bee with improved functionalities that will make life on the fly easier for parents.

The new Bugaboo Bee features a height-adjustable backrest that simultaneously adjusts with the sun canopy and 5-point harness to four different height positions; a ground-breaking feature that has not yet been seen on any stroller in the market. The reversible seat has been reengineered with a circular joint system that allows the seat to be easily reversed so the child can either face the parent or the world.

The new Bugaboo Bee is truly an infant-to-toddler system as these innovations allow the stroller to grow with your child seamlessly and comfortably.

Additional upgrades include a height-adjustable handlebar with 10 fixed settings, an improved brake system and a redesigned wheel reminiscent of the iconic Bugaboo Cameleon and Bugaboo Frog.

Further, the adjustable seat is now wider and coupled with the backrest which has been redesigned to mirror the natural shape of a child’s back the new Bugaboo Bee will surely become a kid’s favorite stroller.

Updated accessories for the new Bugaboo Bee include an innovative breezy sun canopy(can now be purchased as a separate accessory) for the warm summer months and a new reversible bamboo seat liner designed for year round use. The new breezy sun canopy provides ventilation and full sun protection with a sun canopy extension and pop out sunshade.

The Bugaboo Bee is available in yellow, red, pink, blue, dark khaki and black.

Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Prices:

  • Bugaboo Bee $649
  • Seat liner $59.95
  • Breezy sun canopy $69.95
  • Sun canopy $49


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Cancer Survivour Welcomes a Second Child Following Ovarian Tissue Transplant

A cancer survivor, who had her fertility restored through a pioneering procedure, has given birth to her second daughter.

Stinne Bergholdt, a doctor from Odense, Denmark was diagnosed with Ewing’s sarcoma in 2004. Treatment for this rare bone cancer was destined to leave her sterile. At only 27 years-old, Dr Bergholdt had yet to have children and was willing to take a chance on a new procedure, in the hope that she would someday have the opportunity to conceive.

One ovary had previously been removed due to a cyst. Dr. Bergholdt had tissue removed, from her remaining right ovary, and frozen.

In December 2005, it was deemed that her cancer treatment had been successful and she underwent the procedure to reattach six of the thirteen frozen strips of tissue. She then proceeded with fertility treatments, to stimulate the ovary, and had in vitro fertilization to conceive her first daughter Aviaja, who was born in February, 2007.

Dr. Bergholdt returned to the same clinic, the following year, to receive assistance in conceiving a second child only to discover that she had already become pregnant, naturally. She gave birth to her second daughter, Lucca, in September, 2008.

Professor Claus Yding Andersen, of the University Hospital of Copenhagen, pioneered the technique and treated Dr. Bergholdt. Andersen says that, “As long as the tissue remains properly stored in liquid nitrogen, it could remain functional for 40 years.” He stated that, “She has seven more ovarian strips in the liquid nitrogen tank and may, if she wishes, have more tissue transplanted to maintain her ovarian function once the current strips stop working.”

Andersen is amazed that the transplanted tissue has continued to function for so many years. It was not anticipated that Dr. Bergholdt would conceive naturally and she is the first to do so, following the transplant procedure. It is a testament to the power and potential of Andersen’s technique.

Dr. Bergholdt co-authored the research paper on her case, which was published in the journal Human Reproduction. She said, “When I found out I was pregnant for the first time I was very happy and excited – but also very afraid and sceptical since I found it very hard to believe that my body was really working again. The second time it was quite a surprise to find out I was pregnant since we thought we needed assistance like the first time.”

The procedure has resulted in the births of nine children worldwide. Three children, including Dr. Bergholdt’s two miracles, have been born after treatment by Professor Andersen. – Jen R, Staff Writer.

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Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Vaginal Delivery After C-Section May Not Pose Additional Risk

A new study, published in the British obstetrics journal BJOG, suggests that there may not be any additional risk to women who attempt a vaginal delivery after three or more births by C-section.

In the past, a woman who had delivered by caesarean once would be delivered by caesarean section for all subsequent pregnancies. The primary concern had been the potential of the scar, from the previous C-section, to rupture during vaginal delivery. That thinking has gradually changed, in consideration of the potential complications of the caesarean procedure, and data which shows the risk of uterine rupture to be less than 1%. Vaginal delivery is now considered a viable option for women who have previously delivered by caesarean.

The risk of uterine rupture, however, is thought to be higher in women who have had three or more C-section deliveries. The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology currently recommends against vaginal delivery, for women in this category.

However, the findings of the new study indicate differently. The study looked at the cases of 25,000 women in 17 American hospitals, all of whom gave birth after at least one C-section. Of this group, 860 women had undergone a minimum of three previous caesareans and of those, 89 opted for a vaginal delivery.

Apart from the possibility of uterine rupture, other potential complications include bladder or bowel injury and lacerations of the uterine artery. None of the 89 vaginal deliveries studied presented any of these complications.

The study’s lead researcher, Dr. Alison G. Cahill of the Washington University School of Medicine, points out that all of the 89 women, who opted to deliver vaginally, had previous C-sections involving low transverse incisions. This type of incision has a lower risk of rupture than the ‘classical’ high vertical incision. Cahill also noted that women who had previous vaginal deliveries were more likely to succeed with a vaginal delivery after caesarean.

The National Institutes of Health will be holding a consensus conference, next month, to discuss the issue of vaginal birth after caesarean. Recommendations may be changed at that time but until then, women should be advised of the current recommendation which discourages vaginal birth after three or more caesarean sections. – Jen R, Staff Writer

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A Very Special Heart: The Must-Have Accessory That Could Save Your Life

A Very Special Heart has taken the ordinary USB drive and made it extraordinary. Inside each of their unique Heart pendants for women and Globe keychains for men, users can store a wealth of important medical and personal records that can be easily accessed from any computer in the world with a USB drive.

My son was born at 24 weeks weighing 1lb 9oz. He spent 227 days in the NICU before coming home with many issues. He was on oxygen 24/7, was g tube fed around the clock and was on an apnea monitor. Just five short days after coming home from such a long stay, Ashton was readmitted and ended up ventilated again. At this time his g tube was switched to a gj tube for feeds and even now has horrible “blue spells” that, to this day, have not been diagnosed.

Now, at 4.5 years old, Ashton continues with struggles in life and is constantly at the hospital. In June of 2007 he had a cochlear implant placed as we found out in September 2006 that he was profoundly deaf. In January 2007 we found out that he was legally blind and therefore needed glasses. Just shortly after receiving this heart to review, Ashton was admitted to the ICU for a trial of bipap as he has severe sleep apnea. Unfortunately on his third night he coded twice, both times requiring CPR. This led to him having a tracheotomy done on December 11th.

During this time, A Very Special Heart has been a wonderful thing for me. Each time we meet a new doctor or end up in hospital I am always asked over and over about his history, medical conditions, surgeries, medications, vaccinations, feeds, hospital stays and other doctors that he sees. It has been very convenient to be able to just hand over the heart with all of his information without me having to go constantly over it.

On start up, the main page features picture identification for each person that has information stored on the Heart as well as advanced directives, such as a living will or power of attorney. Getting setup was easy. Once plugged in, a Very Special Heart's software prompts you to enter information for each family member. This includes stuff like medications (both prescribed and over-the-counter), allergies, medical conditions (asthma, g-tube, cochlear implant), primary physician and insurance information. For kids, this is especially nice because there is also a place for their vaccination schedule.

Additional storage on the Heart also offers sections for both public and private documents. In public you have medical release forms, parental consent forms, organ donor information, DNR(Do Not Resuscitate) information to make sure your wishes are followed and then x-rays and MRIs. This is another huge plus for me. I love that I can store my son’s x-rays, MRIs and other important scans so that any new doctor has all the information at their fingertips.

Private documents are password protected. Here you can store copies of your drivers license, birth certificates, passports, credit cards, visas and any other important documents.

A Very Special Heart has been so simple to use and I love that I can update it as I need to. You never know when you might need it, but you can feel comfortable knowing that IF you or someone else in your family ended up in an emergency situation that the EMTs and doctors would be able to give any of you the best possible care with all of the information right at their fingertips.

I highly recommend this heart to all families. Having it gives me the peace of mind of knowing that all possible information is there and best of all - it's always around my neck in case of an emergency!

*Thank you to Very Special Heart for providing me with this heart to review*


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Bird Hormone May Help Human Birth Control

If the new research is to be believed, humans may soon be having babies like birds as scientist at UC Berkeley have found a hormone that interrupts with sperm and egg production.

Researcher George Bentley and his team had for sometime now, known of a hormone called GNIH in birds that acted like an on-off switch and controlled the production of eggs and sperm. When the environmental conditions were not suitable, the hormone acted like a birth control so that birds could use limited resources for their own survival. When the conditions were suitable again, birth processes took place as usual.

Now the same team of scientists has isolated the GNIH hormone in humans as they believed that all animals from birds, to rats to humans had the same kind of hormones in their body.

"We didn't know if it was there. We were pretty sure it was," Bentley recalled. "When I first looked at the sections under the microscope, I was very excited. I was trembling."

This could lead to a new revolution in the field of birth control and even fertility as scientists learn to use the action of the hormone.

As Dr. Bentley said, “If we could inhibit the inhibitor, then we could potentially activate reproductions,so there are all sorts of clinical possibilities there."

The team is now devoting its time in further study of this hormone that opens huge possibilities in birth control as well as fertility problems. - Atula, Staff Writer

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Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Canadian Mom Selling Breastmilk Online

Sara Wiens, a Winnipeg mom, has gallons of breastmilk saved in her freezer that her son cannot drink. So she is turning to the internet to help find a buyer for her surplus.

Wiens has been pumping and storing breastmilk in her freezer since the birth of her son four months ago. Now she has a huge collection of milk, none of which her son can drink. Wiens discovered that her infant has an allergy to the protein in cow's milk, a protein that can be passed on through her breastmilk when she eats of drinks milk products. All of the milk in her freezer comes from a time when she was still consuming milk products.

Frozen breastmilk lasts much longer than storing milk in a refrigerator, yet it still has an expiration date. The oldest bags of milk will need to be disposed of by spring, making finding a buyer quickly very important.

She has no set price for the milk, though she does hope to get enough money to cover the cost of the rental pump she was using and other expenses. She estimates the price between $200 and $500, with enough milk stored to feed an infant for at least three months. “Compared to formula, it’s a lot cheaper and a lot better,” Wiens said.

There are milk banks available in Canada, however there is not one close enough to Wiens to be able to donate. It was suggested that she donate milk to Haiti, however the cost of shipping and customs would be thousands of dollars. It is also not certain that her breastmilk would be used in Haiti as US officials have asked milk donations to stop.

Wiens placed her breastmilk sale on Kijiji — a classifieds website, and has already received five offers. She is confident that she will be able to find a buyer for her milk soon. Summer, staff writer

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Milla and Ever Are Coldwater Canyon Park Companions

Milla Jovovich and daughter Ever were spotted enjoying a beautiful day at Coldwater Canyon Park in Beverly Hills yesterday.

Milla and Ever Are Coldwater Canyon Park Companions

Ever showed she has inherited her mom's keen fashion sense by wearing a jersey knit jacket, leggings and biker boots!
Milla and Ever Are Coldwater Canyon Park Companions Milla and Ever Are Coldwater Canyon Park Companions Milla and Ever Are Coldwater Canyon Park Companions

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{SPLASH AND WENN}


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Britax Introduces New Frontier 85 Harness-2-Booster Seat

Britax is introducing a new combination booster seat that offers the maximum harnessed weight and height capacity in the industry with the best anthropometric fit. The FrontierTM XT Combination Harness-2-BoosterTM with True Side Impact ProtectionTM allows children to remain in a five-point harness up to 29.5 kilograms (65 pounds) with a seated shoulder height of up to 50.8 centimeters (20 inches). As a belt-positioning booster, the seat can accommodate children up to 54.5 kilograms (120 pounds) and 165 centimeters (65 inches) tall.

Designed to keep children in a five-point harness for as long as possible, the Frontier XT helps safely graduate children who are at least 2 years old and weigh at least 11.4 kilograms (25 pounds) from their convertible car seats. The True Side Impact Protection technology on the Frontier XT includes deeper side walls, and works to distribute crash forces, shield from vehicle intrusion, contain the head and body, and keep the head, neck and spine aligned. This is important because one in four of all motor vehicle crashes that involve children occur from the side, and these crashes result in a significantly higher injury rate than front or rear crashes.

“We know that Transport Canada promotes keeping children harnessed for as long as possible,” said Sebastiaan Selders, product manager at Britax. “We designed the Frontier XT to not only help children remain in a five-point harness longer and provide greater side impact protection, but to also offer superior ease-of-use and installation features. This is critical because when a seat is used correctly it provides optimal protection for the child."

In order to accommodate the higher height limit and provide a secure fit, the Frontier XT offers a total of 10 harness positions and three buckle strap positions. The harness also has a cobble weave design with sewn buckle stops to help prevent the harness from twisting and sliding out of place.

The Frontier XT includes a number of parent-favorite features. These include: a quick-adjust head restraint, no-rethread harness, color-coded vehicle belt guides, Versa Tether®, Harness Ultra Guard System (HUGS™) and premium push-button lower connectors. The seat also offers big, comfortable armrests, dual cup holders, and a durable, washable cover.

When used as a belt-positioning booster the Frontier XT is compatible with the new Britax SecureGuard Belt Positioning Accessory Clip. The SecureGuard, which is sold separately, works with the vehicle safety belt to prevent the child from sliding under the lap-belt portion of the safety belt during impact, reducing the risk of abdominal injury.

The Frontier XT comes in three fashions and will be available at independent and mass retailers in March 2010.


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Featured Review: CARES Child Aviation Restraint System

Every time we travel by airplane we always bring my son’s car seat so that he is safe and secure. Our guy is a bit of a mover so we fear that if he was in just a lap belt he may be able to undo it and try to move around the plane. The only problem with this is that the Car Seat is heavy, bulky and a pain to cart around the airport.

In an attempt to lighten our load and reduce what we have to bag check, we chose to try out the CARES 5-point Child Aviation Restraint System on a recent vacation.

Approved for use on airplanes traveling in North America, the CARES Restraint System is a lightweight belt that slips easily over the seat to create a harness similar to the one on my son’s regular Car Seat. Loops at the bottom of the harness slip through the airplane’s lap belt giving you the safety of a 5-point harness without the extra 30lbs the seat comes with.

Not knowing what to expect, I informed the flight attendants of our plans to use the CARES harness as soon as we boarded US Airlines flight. We were immediately told that we were not allowed to use the harness as it interfered with their seating. Thankfully CARES had included printed copies from Transport Canada and The Federal Aviation Administration’s websites outlining the child restraint system’s purpose, weight limit and sub-section code. We were asked to leave the paperwork with the flight attendants and were told they would let us know if their ‘book’ said it was ok.

After just a few minutes one of the ladies came to our seat and gave us the go ahead to use the harness with for our son.

Shortly after that we had him buckled in. This harness is so easy to install. All we had to do was lift the tray table behind my son’s seat, slide the belt over the seat and tighten. To finish, we slid the bottom of the harness through the lap belt and we were ready to go.

Having the CARES harness along for our trip helped keep everything in order without the bulk and extra weight. Our son stayed buckled securely for most of the trip, which gave me the piece of mind I am always looking for without the stress of lugging around an extra piece of gear.

I highly recommend this harness to any parent looking to keep their child safe while traveling by airplane. It is beautifully designed, easy to use and convenient to store - all qualities parents-on-the go are looking for.

Priced at $63 on Amazon

*Thank you to Kids Fly Safe for providing us with this Restraint System for our flight*


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