It used to be that “ten fingers and ten toes” was the barometer for whether a baby was born healthy. But the more we learn about autism, the better we understand that babies are often born with difficult, life-altering ailments that are much tougher to see at first glance.
Needless to say, if science could discover a silver bullet for preventing autism, Continue reading
A new study shows that unborn babies are listening to their mothers talk during the last 10 weeks of pregnancy and at birth can demonstrate what they’ve heard.
Babies only hours old are able to differentiate between sounds from their native language and Continue reading
Their Mexican-born counterparts at lesser risk
In a large epidemiologic study, researchers at UCLA’s Jonsson Cancer Center found that the children of U.S.-born Latina women are at higher risk of having retinoblastoma, a malignant tumor of the retina which Continue reading
This here is a story about bees, notoriously hard workers. Older bees, that is, which go and take on responsibilities usually doled out to the younger, stronger bees. When you look at the effects on the brains of these older bees, a picture emerges that could have huge effects for people. Another health breakthrough for dementia, anyone? Continue reading
Smoking during pregnancy has widely documented health repercussions both for mother and baby. A study at the University of Zaragoza on 1216 newly born babies confirms that those born to mothers who smoke weigh and measure less.
A new study lead by the University of Zaragoza evaluates the differences Continue reading
Checking the heart of the unborn baby usually involves a stethoscope. However, an inexpensive and accurate Bluetooth fetal heart rate monitoring system has now been developed by researchers in India for long-term home care. Details are reported in a forthcoming issue of the International Journal of Computers in Healthcare. Continue reading
Numerous infant studies indicate environmental knowledge is present soon after birth Continue reading
Engineers and surgeons are working together to improve the treatment of babies born with craniosynostosis, a condition that causes the bone plates in the skull to fuse too soon. Treating this condition typically requires surgery after birth to remove portions of the fused skull bones, and in some cases the bones grow together again too quickly — requiring additional surgeries.
Researchers in the Atlanta-based Center for Pediatric Healthcare Technology Innovation are developing imaging techniques designed to predict whether a child’s skull bones are likely to grow back together too quickly after surgery. They are also developing technologies that may delay a repeat of the premature fusion process. Continue reading
The sobering statistic is that every day approximately seven babies die of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Recent research suggests the simple act of breastfeeding may significantly reduce the risk of this disease and the reduction may be particularly dramatic if the breastfeeding is exclusive of formula feeding: Health Day reports. The study published in the June 13 issue of Pediatrics found a 45% reduction in SIDS risk in babies who received any amount of breast milk and a whopping 73% reduction in those who were breastfed exclusively.
Aside from lowering SIDS risk, breast feeding provides other advantages. Experts widely regard breast milk as the best type of nourishment, Continue reading
Though more than one in 10 American babies are born prematurely, there have been few clues to predict whether a particular baby is going to arrive too early – until now.
A new study suggests that more than 80 percent of pre-term births can be spotted in advance with a blood test taken during the second trimester of a pregnancy.
“What’s been missing is a way of assessing risk,” said Steven Graves, who directs the chemistry portion of the research at Brigham Young University. “Our approach has been to look at the naturally occurring molecules that are present in women’s blood to see if we can identify the peptides Continue reading
Most babies born in rich countries this century will eventually make it
to their 100th birthday, new research says. Danish experts say that
since the 20th century, people in developed countries are living about
three decades longer than in the past. Surprisingly, the trend shows
little sign of slowing down.
In an article published Friday in the medical journal Lancet, the researchers write that the process of aging may be “modifiable.”
Vaupel of the Max Planck Institute in Germany and colleagues in Denmark
examined studies published globally in 2004-2005 on numerous issues
related to aging. They found life expectancy
is increasing steadily in most countries, even beyond the limits of
what scientists first thought possible. In Japan, for instance, which
has the world’s longest life expectancy, more than half of the
country’s 80-year-old women are expected to live to 90.
“Improvements in health care
are leading to ever slowing rates of aging, challenging the idea that
there is a fixed ceiling to human longevity,” said David Gems, an aging
expert at University College London. Gems was not connected to the
research, and is studying drugs that can lengthen the life span of
mice, which may one day have applications for people.
studies of mice, including our own, demonstrate that if you slow aging
even just a little, it has a strong protective effect,” he said. “A
pill that slowed aging could provide protection against the whole gamut
of aging-related diseases.”
While illnesses affecting the elderly like heart disease, cancer
and diabetes are rising, advances in medical treatment are also making
it possible for them to remain active for longer. The obesity epidemic,
however, may complicate matters. Extra weight makes people more
susceptible to diseases and may increase their risk of dying.
the U.S., data from 1982 to 2000 showed a major drop in illness and
disability among the elderly, though that has now begun to reverse,
probably linked to the rise in obesity.
graying population will slowly radically transform society, and
retirement ages may soon be pushed back, said Richard Suzman, an aging
expert at the U.S. National Institute on Aging.
are within five to 10 years of a watershed event where there will be
more people on earth over 65 than there under five,” he said. “Those
extra years need to be financed somehow and we need to start thinking
about it now.”