Friday, May 21, 2010
Friday, April 30, 2010
in maternal-fetal medicine at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania said.
But fetal heart monitoring is an appallingly poor test. The test misses the majority of babies with cerebral palsy, the condition researchers hoped it would prevent. It causes increased rates of a painful and invasive surgery: cesarean section. Even worse, almost all women undergo continuous heart monitoring during labor, not just those at highest risk.
He also said:
The complication we feared most was hypoxia, the baby not getting enough oxygen during labor. Going too long without adequate oxygen could result in a serious permanent injury, such as cerebral palsy, or even death.
No test is perfect. But almost every time we whisked a mother back to the operating room, and I cut through skin, fat, fascia, and finally the muscle of the uterus, expecting a blue, floppy baby, the child I delivered emerged pink, healthy, and a little bit angry.
Were we saving lives and averting disaster? Or were we performing unnecessary surgery?
If EFM is so unreliable, then I ask why is it still even used, or at least why is it standard for all birthing patients? This to me does NOT look like evidence based medicine. Why?
Steven Clark and Gary Hankins, two prominent obstetricians, voiced my frustration. "A test leading to an unnecessary major abdominal operation in more than 99.5 percent of cases should be regarded by the medical community as absurd at best," they wrote in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. "Electronic fetal heart rate monitoring has probably done more harm than good."
If you would like to read the entire article, written by Alex Friedman see link included. http://www.philly.com/inquirer/magazine/20100426_Test_leads_to_needless_C-sections.html
Thursday, April 29, 2010
Monday, November 16, 2009
Friday, November 13, 2009
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Birth: Many places you can not birth where you want. Many states still have legislation against home birth midwives and birth centers. If your in the hospital you don't have any say in YOUR own care. You get a blanket consent form to sign(and most women don't even know that's what they are signing) that gives them the "right" to do and give you anything since they already have your consent they don't really have to tell you. If you don't play the good patient and go along with what they want you to do then here comes the bullying and scare tactics. If that doesn't work then they can even go as far as involving DHS, having your kids taken away and getting a court order to FORCE you to do what THEY want. Here is a link to mom who LOST HER BABY due to not consenting to an UNNEEDED c/section. She ended up having baby, vaginally with no complications and healthy mom AND BABY, and she still lost her child. Where then is her FREEDOM to CHOOSE her own care???
Vaxing: There are very few states where parents can opt out of vaxing their kids and still have them in school. There are many states where unless there is a medical contraindication. So in order for your kids to go to school they HAVE to basically be poisened again the parents wishes. How then are you FREE to CHOOSE how to care for your child?
Breastfeeding: There are still states where breastfeeding in public is still not protected. Moms getting arrested, harassed and embarrassed for feeding their child!
Home schooling: More and more parents are choosing to home school their children and I for one do not blame them. If I could do it I would in a heart beat. With the way school are I would rather teach them myself. For those who can and do teach their kids there is always the unsupervised DHS/DYFC/CPS what ever they are called that can swoop in and getcha for home schooling, saying your kids are not meeting the so called standard. I have heard many home schooling moms talk about how they keep very in detail diaries about everything they do so they they will have evidence to back them up in case DHS gets bored and comes after them.Again are we really FREE to CHOOSE what and how our kids learn, Nope.
Doctors and medical care for your kids: Now this one is a little more grey area kind of. I personally have fallen victim to DHS for not taking my kids in for well baby/child checks. All of my kids are healthy and when sick or when its NEEDED my kids are seen by a doctor. But I got dinged for not taking them in for their check ups???WHAT!! There is no LAW that requires it and its against what I believe so again how am I FREE to CHOOSE when to take them in. Another story that has been in the news OK since when does a JUDGE(if in fact it is a real judge and not what I got called a Referee) to decide what a person wants or what a family has decided as what is best for them. At 13 years old in any state he would be old enough to choose what parent he wanted to live with, get condoms or BC(if her were a she), choose to have baby ect but now he is too young to make up his OWN mind about chemo? I know even at my age chemo scares the crap outta me and I probably wouldn't want to do it either but they can FORCE him to?
I do not hate the US, far from it. I just think they are getting further and further away from where we should be. They don't feel they have to right to tell a women what to do with her body when it comes to whether or not they can choose to have an abortion but THEY can choose FOR US how we birth and raise them?? So much for smaller government, all I see is it getting bigger and bigger. Giving away all the power to DHS and striping parents constitutional rights away. Ripping families apart. Man I hope Obama gets his shit together on this one.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
"I, the undersigned physician, have, in violation of the Consumer Bill of Rights and Responsibilities, the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act, the Patient Self Determination Act, the ethical guidelines of the American Medical Association and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Constitutional Law (the right to privacy and self determination protected by the 1st and 14th amendments), international tort law, and case law (of particular interest "In re A.C.", 1987, "In re Fetus Brown, 689 N.E.2d 397, 400 (Ill. App. Ct. 1997)", and "In re Baby Boy Doe, 632 N.E.2d 326 (Ill. App. Ct. 1994)") and the Patient Rights as determined by this institution, deprived my client,________________, of her right to self determination and her right to bodily integrity by ignoring her repeated refusal for delivery by repeat cesarean section. I acknowledge that by refusing to honor my client's denial of consent, I have not only violated the above laws, but I also affirm that I have used unwarranted and unethical pressure including emotional threats to my client's and her unborn child's life and safety, in my attempts to obtain such consent. I further affirm that I have stressed the risks of vaginal birth after cesarean, but neglected to inform my patient of the risks of delivery by repeat cesarean section. I further affirm that I understand, that should I resort to physical force, including but not limited to physical or chemical restraints to compel my client's cooperation, I will be guilty of criminal battery, which is defined as "any form of non-consensual touching or treatment that occurs in a medical setting". In compensation for the above violations of my client's rights, I hereby guarantee the following:a healthy baby, born in perfect condition, with no physical, mental or developmental defecits whatsoever, whether arising from surgery or any other cause no complications for the infant, including but not limited to: persistent pulmonary hypertension, transient tachypnea of the newborn, respiratory distress syndrome, iatrogenic prematurity, lacerations, or hematomaa speedy, uncomplicated post-operative recovery for my client. Specifically, I guarantee that my client shall not experience nerve damage, organ damage, hemorrhage (whether sufficient to require transfusion or not), disability or disfigurement, intraoperative or postoperative infection of the wound or surrounding skin and tissues, post partum depression and post partum post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and other conditions not listed here. Signed,_____________________"
So many people are reading this and asking, what are the real odds that a child will bleed to death from a circumcision? Well I don't know what the odds are but there has to be some risk as with any surgery that can be a risk. Hemorrage, infection and wound healing problems are pretty much risk with ANY kind of surgical procedure. Why would you put this kind of risk on your baby for something that is COSMETIC is beyond me..........
Windsor A nine-week-old baby boy bled to death hours after being
circumcised, an inquest was told. Celian Noumbiwe was operated on in 2007 at a doctor’s surgery in Reading but later his parents opened his nappy and found a “huge amount” of blood.
Recording a narrative verdict, the Berkshire Coroner
criticised the lack of advice given to the couple on
postoperative care, noting that the emergency number given to them did not work. After the surgery, Carole Youmby and her partner, Monthe Bautrel, originally from France, were encouraged to leave the surgery with the baby within ten minutes when he should have been observed for longer, the court was told. Ms Youmby said that she had been told that the child’s nappy should not be changed for four hours. After calling the emergency number several times, the couple decided to call their GP in the morning. The next day, February 22, 2007, the child was taken from his home in Slough to the nearby Wexham Park Hospital where he died in his mother’s arms.
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Monday, May 26, 2008
Think about It
Common ingredient in infant formula was found to be linked to diarrhea, severe dehydration and seizures in babies, according to complaints submitted to the FDA.
A shocking report has been released on the adverse health effects of fatty acids found in infant formulas. The Cornucopia Institute, a US-based corporate watchdog group, presented their findings on the fatty acids DHA and ARA, which are now commonly added to formula.
The report is based on a Freedom of Information Act request that the Cornucopia Institute filed with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the result of which was the uncovering of 98 reports filed by parents and physicians detailing incidences when babies had reacted adversely to formula containing DHA/ARA. The reported incidences range from cases of vomiting and diarrhea that stopped when babies switched to non-DHA/ARA formula to babies being treated in intensive care units for severe dehydration and seizures.
The FDA has never been convinced of the safety of DHA/ARA additives, according to the report. In its initial analysis of the additives, the FDA stated it had reached no determination on their safety status. The administration also noted that some studies had reported unexpected deaths among infants who had been fed with DHA/ARA formula. Despite its reservations, inexplicably the FDA did not withhold approval for the additives.
INFACT Canada has long questioned the use of DHA and ARA (also marketed as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids) in infant formula. All major formula companies have added the fatty acids to their products in recent years, claiming that they aid in brain and eye development. However most test results have found the additives have negligible effects on infant development. But because DHA and ARA are found naturally in breastmilk, formula companies market DHA/ARA formula as "closer to breastmilk."
Martek Biosciences Corporation, the company that supplies almost all formula companies with DHA/ARA, has admitted that the purpose of the additives is not to encourage healthy development, but to be used as a marketing tool. In its promotional material to encourage investment, Martek stated:
"Infant formula is currently a commodity market, with all products being almost identical and marketers competing intensely to differentiate their product. Even if [DHA/ARA] has no benefit, we think it would be widely incorporated into formulas, as a marketing tool and to allow companies to promote their formula as 'closest to human milk.'"
While DHA and ARA are found naturally in breast milk, the idea that Martek's manufactured acids make formula closer to breast milk is ridiculous. Martek produces DHA and ARA from fermented algae and fungus, and uses hexane (a neurotoxin) in the manufacturing process. Simply adding these synthetic substances to formula cannot make artificial baby milk behave like breast milk, which is a complex, living substance that provides babies with the best possible nutrition and immunological protection.
Regular infant formula puts babies' health at risk, but now infants are being harmed for the sake of a marketing tool. This is an egregious case of formula companies putting profit margins above infant health. In light of this report, it is imperative that all parents be made aware of the potential risks of feeding their babies formula with DHA/ARA. The products should be pulled from the market until their safety can be properly assessed by independent investigations.
Babies should not have to get sick just because companies want to raise their sales figures.
For the full report, see: http://cornucopia.org/DHA/DHA
~ INFACT Canada
Sunday, May 25, 2008
This is one of my most favorite articles! Enjoy.
Pelvises I Have Known and Loved
by Gloria Lemay
What if there were no pelvis? What if it were as insignificant to how a child is born as how big the nose is on the mother's face? After twenty years of watching birth, this is what I have come to. Pelvises open at three stretch points—the symphisis pubis and the two sacroiliac joints. These points are full of relaxin hormones—the pelvis literally begins falling apart at about thirty-four weeks of pregnancy. In addition to this mobile, loose, stretchy pelvis, nature has given human beings the added bonus of having a moldable, pliable, shrinkable baby head. Like a steamer tray for a cooking pot has folding plates that adjust it to any size pot, so do these four overlapping plates that form the infant's skull adjust to fit the mother's body.
Every woman who is alive today is the result of millions of years of natural selection. Today's women are the end result of evolution. We are the ones with the bones that made it all the way here. With the exception of those born in the last thirty years, we almost all go back through our maternal lineage generation after generation having smooth, normal vaginal births. Prior to thirty years ago, major problems in large groups were always attributable to maternal malnutrition (starvation) or sepsis in hospitals.
Twenty years ago, physicians were known to tell women that the reason they had a cesarean was that the child's head was just too big for the size of the pelvis. The trouble began when these same women would stay at home for their next child's birth and give birth to a bigger baby through that same pelvis. This became very embarrassing, and it curtailed this reason being put forward for doing cesareans. What replaced this reason was the post-cesarean statement: "Well, it's a good thing we did the cesarean because the cord was twice around the baby's neck." This is what I've heard a lot of in the past ten years. Doctors must come up with a very good reason for every operation because the family will have such a dreadful time with the new baby and mother when they get home that, without a convincing reason, the fathers would be on the warpath. Just imagine if the doctor said honestly, "Well, Joe, this was one of those times when we jumped the gun—there was actually not a thing wrong with either your baby or your wife. I'm sorry she'll have a six week recovery to go through for nothing." We do know that at least 15 percent of cesareans are unnecessary but the parents are never told. There is a conspiracy among hospital staff to keep this information from families for obvious reasons.
In a similar vein, I find it interesting that in 1999, doctors now advocate discontinuing the use of the electronic fetal monitor. This is something natural birth advocates have campaigned hard for and have not been able to accomplish in the past twenty years. The natural-types were concerned about possible harm to the baby from the Doppler ultrasound radiation as well as discomfort for the mother from the two tight belts around her belly. Now in l999, the doctors have joined the campaign to rid maternity wards of these expensive pieces of technology. Why, you ask. Because it has just dawned on the doctors that the very strip of paper recording fetal heart tones that they thought proved how careful and conscientious they were, and which they thought was their protection, has actually been their worst enemy in a court of law. A good lawyer can take any piece of "evidence" and find an expert to interpret it to his own ends. After a baby dies or is damaged, the hindsight people come in and go over these strips, and the doctors are left with huge legal settlements to make. What the literature indicates now is that when a nurse with a stethoscope listens to the "real" heartbeat through a fetoscope (not the bounced back and recorded beat shown on a monitor read-out) the cesarean rate goes down by 50 percent with no adverse effects on fetal mortality rates.
Of course, I am in favour of the abolition of electronic fetal monitoring but it would be far more uplifting if this was being done for some sort of health improvement and not just more ways to cover butt in court.
Now let's get back to pelvises I have known and loved. When I was a keen beginner midwife, I took many workshops in which I measured pelvises of my classmates. Bi-spinous diameters, sacral promontories, narrow arches—all very important and serious. Gynecoid, android, anthropoid and the dreaded platypelloid all had to be measured, assessed and agonized over. I worried that babies would get "hung up" on spikes and bone spurs that could, according to the folklore, appear out of nowhere. Then one day I heard the head of obstetrics at our local hospital say, "The best pelvimeter is the baby's head." In other words, a head passing through the pelvis would tell you more about the size of it than all the calipers and X-rays in the world. He did not advocate taking pelvic measurements at all. Of course, doing pelvimetry in early pregnancy before the hormones have started relaxing the pelvis is ridiculous.
One of the midwife "tricks" that we were taught was to ask the mother's shoe size. If the mother wore size five or more shoes, the theory went that her pelvis would be ample. Well, 98 percent of women take over size five shoes so this was a good theory that gave me confidence in women's bodies for a number of years. Then I had a client who came to me at eight months pregnant seeking a home waterbirth. She had, up till that time, been under the care of a hospital nurse-midwifery practise. She was Greek and loved doing gymnastics. Her eighteen-year-old body glowed with good health, and I felt lucky to have her in my practise until I asked the shoe size question. She took size two shoes. She had to buy her shoes in Chinatown to get them small enough—oh dear. I thought briefly of refreshing my rusting pelvimetry skills, but then I reconsidered. I would not lay this small pelvis trip on her. I would be vigilant at her birth and act if the birth seemed obstructed in an unusual way, but I would not make it a self-fulfilling prophecy. She gave birth to a seven-pound girl and only pushed about twelve times. She gave birth in a water tub sitting on the lap of her young lover and the scene reminded me of "Blue Lagoon" with Brooke Shields—it was so sexy. So that pelvis ended the shoe size theory forever.
Another pelvis that came my way a few years ago stands out in my mind. This young woman had had a cesarean for her first childbirth experience. She had been induced, and it sounded like the usual cascade of interventions. When she was being stitched up after the surgery her husband said to her, "Never mind, Carol, next baby you can have vaginally." The surgeon made the comment back to him, "Not unless she has a two pound baby." When I met her she was having mild, early birth sensations. Her doula had called me to consult on her birth. She really had a strangely shaped body. She was only about five feet, one inch tall, and most of that was legs. Her pregnant belly looked huge because it just went forward—she had very little space between the crest of her hip and her rib cage. Luckily her own mother was present in the house when I first arrived there. I took her into the kitchen and asked her about her own birth experiences. She had had her first baby vaginally. With her second, there had been a malpresentation and she had undergone a cesarean. Since the grandmother had the same body-type as her daughter, I was heartened by the fact that at least she had had one baby vaginally. Again, this woman dilated in the water tub. It was a planned hospital birth, so at advanced dilation they moved to the hospital. She was pushing when she got there and proceeded to birth a seven-pound girl. She used a squatting bar and was thrilled with her completely spontaneous birth experience. I asked her to write to the surgeon who had made the remark that she couldn't birth a baby over two pounds and let him know that this unscientific, unkind remark had caused her much unneeded worry.
Another group of pelvises that inspire me are those of the pygmy women of Africa. I have an article in my files by an anthropologist who reports that these women have a height of four feet, on average. The average weight of their infants is eight pounds! In relative terms, this is like a woman five feet six giving birth to a fourteen-pound baby. The custom in their villages is that the woman stays alone in her hut for birth until her membranes rupture. At that time, she strolls through the village and finds her midwives. The midwives and the woman hold hands and sing as they walk down to the river. At the edge of the river is a flat, well-worn rock on which all the babies are born. The two midwives squat at the mother's side while she pushes her baby out. One midwife scoops up river water to splash on the newborn to stimulate the first breath. After the placenta is birthed the other midwife finds a narrow place in the cord and chews it to separate the infant. Then, the three walk back to join the people. This article has been a teaching and inspiration for me.
That's the bottom line on pelvises—they don't exist in real midwifery. Any baby can slide through any pelvis with a powerful uterus pistoning down on him/her.
Gloria Lemay is a private birth attendant in Vancouver, B.C., Canada.
Thursday, February 28, 2008
Government Concedes Vaccine-Autism Case in Federal Court - Now What?
Government Concedes Vaccine-Autism Case in Federal Court - Now What?
Posted February 25, 2008 | 12:42 PM (EST)
The unprecedented concession was filed on November 9, and sealed to protect the plaintiff's identify. It was obtained through individuals unrelated to the case.
The claim, one of 4,900 autism cases currently pending in Federal "Vaccine Court," was conceded by US Assistant Attorney General Peter Keisler and other Justice Department officials, on behalf of the Department of Health and Human Services, the "defendant" in all Vaccine Court cases.
The child's claim against the government -- that mercury-containing vaccines were the cause of her autism -- was supposed to be one of three "test cases" for the thimerosal-autism theory currently under consideration by a three-member panel of Special Masters, the presiding justices in Federal Claims Court.
Keisler wrote that medical personnel at the HHS Division of Vaccine Injury Compensation (DVIC) had reviewed the case and "concluded that compensation is appropriate."
The doctors conceded that the child was healthy and developing normally until her 18-month well-baby visit, when she received vaccinations against nine different diseases all at once (two contained thimerosal).
Days later, the girl began spiraling downward into a cascade of illnesses and setbacks that, within months, presented as symptoms of autism, including: No response to verbal direction; loss of language skills; no eye contact; loss of "relatedness;" insomnia; incessant screaming; arching; and "watching the florescent lights repeatedly during examination."
Seven months after vaccination, the patient was diagnosed by Dr. Andrew Zimmerman, a leading neurologist at the Kennedy Krieger Children's Hospital Neurology Clinic, with "regressive encephalopathy (brain disease) with features consistent with autistic spectrum disorder, following normal development." The girl also met the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) official criteria for autism.
In its written concession, the government said the child had a pre-existing mitochondrial disorder that was "aggravated" by her shots, and which ultimately resulted in an ASD diagnosis.
"The vaccinations received on July 19, 2000, significantly aggravated an underlying mitochondrial disorder," the concession says, "which predisposed her to deficits in cellular energy metabolism, and manifested as a regressive encephalopathy with features of ASD."
This statement is good news for the girl and her family, who will now be compensated for the lifetime of care she will require. But its implications for the larger vaccine-autism debate, and for public health policy in general, are not as certain.
In fact, the government's concession seems to raise more questions than it answers.
1) Is there a connection between vaccines, mitochondrial disorders and a diagnosis of autism, at least in some cases?
Mitochondria, you may recall from biology class, are the little powerhouses within cells that convert food into electrical energy, partly through a complex process called "oxidative phosphorylation." If this process is impaired, mitochondrial disorder will ensue.
The child in this case had several markers for Mt disease, which was confirmed by muscle biopsy. Mt disease is often marked by lethargy, poor muscle tone, poor food digestion and bowel problems, something found in many children diagnosed with autism.
But mitochondrial disorders are rare in the general population, affecting some 2-per-10,000 people (or just 0.2%). So with 4,900 cases filed in Vaccine Court, this case should be the one and only, extremely rare instance of Mt disease in all the autism proceedings.
But it is not.
Mitochondrial disorders are now thought to be the most common disease associated with ASD. Some journal articles and other analyses have estimated that 10% to 20% of all autism cases may involve mitochondrial disorders, which would make them one thousand times more common among people with ASD than the general population.
Another article, published in the Journal of Child Neurology and co-authored by Dr. Zimmerman, showed that 38% of Kennedy Krieger Institute autism patients studied had one marker for impaired oxidative phosphorylation, and 47% had a second marker.
The authors -- who reported on a case-study of the same autism claim conceded in Vaccine Court -- noted that "children who have (mitochondrial-related) dysfunctional cellular energy metabolism might be more prone to undergo autistic regression between 18 and 30 months of age if they also have infections or immunizations at the same time."
An interesting aspect of Mt disease in autism is that, with ASD, the mitochondrial disease seems to be milder than in "classic" cases of Mt disorder. In fact, classic Mt disease is almost always inherited, either passed down by the mother through mitochondrial DNA, or by both parents through nuclear DNA.
In autism-related Mt disease, however, the disorder is not typically found in other family members, and instead appears to be largely of the sporadic variety, which may now account for 75% of all mitochondrial disorders.
Meanwhile, an informal survey of seven families of children with cases currently pending in Vaccine Court revealed that all seven showed markers for mitochondrial dysfunction, dating back to their earliest medical tests. The facts in all seven claims mirror the case just conceded by the government: Normal development followed by vaccination, immediate illness, and rapid decline culminating in an autism diagnosis.
2) With 4,900 cases pending, and more coming, will the government concede those with underlying Mt disease -- and if it not, will the Court award compensation?
The Court will soon begin processing the 4900 cases pending before it. What if 10% to 20% of them can demonstrate the same Mt disease and same set of facts as those in the conceded case? Would the government be obliged to concede 500, or even 1,000 cases? What impact would that have on public opinion? And is there enough money currently in the vaccine injury fund to cover so many settlements?
When asked for a comment last week about the court settlement, a spokesman for HHS furnished the following written statement:
"DVIC has reviewed the scientific information concerning the allegation that vaccines cause autism and has found no credible evidence to support the claim. Accordingly, in every case under the Vaccine Act, DVIC has maintained the position that vaccines do not cause autism, and has never concluded in any case that autism was caused by vaccination."
3) If the government is claiming that vaccines did not "cause" autism, but instead aggravated a condition to "manifest" as autism, isn't that a very fine distinction?
For most affected families, such linguistic gymnastics is not so important. And even if a vaccine injury "manifested" as autism in only one case, isn't that still a significant development worthy of informing the public?
On the other hand, perhaps what the government is claiming is that vaccination resulted in the symptoms of autism, but not in an actual, factually correct diagnosis of autism itself.
4) If the government is claiming that this child does NOT have autism, then how many other children might also have something else that merely "mimics" autism?
Is it possible that 10%-20% of the cases that we now label as "autism," are not autism at all, but rather some previously undefined "look-alike" syndrome that merely presents as "features" of autism?
This question gets to the heart of what autism actually is. The disorder is defined solely as a collection of features, nothing more. If you have the features (and the diagnosis), you have the disorder. The underlying biology is the great unknown.
But let's say the government does determine that these kids don't have actual "autism" (something I speculated on HuffPost a year ago). Then shouldn't the Feds go back and test all people with ASD for impaired oxidative phosphorylation, perhaps reclassifying many of them?
If so, will we then see "autism" cases drop by tens, if not hundreds of thousands of people? Will there be a corresponding ascension of a newly described disorder, perhaps something like "Vaccine Aggravated Mitochondrial Disease with Features of ASD?"
And if this child was technically "misdiagnosed" with DSM-IV autism by Dr Zimmerman, how does he feel about HHS doctors issuing a second opinion re-diagnosis of his patient, whom they presumably had neither met nor examined? (Zimmerman declined an interview).
And along those lines, aren't Bush administration officials somewhat wary of making long-distance, retroactive diagnoses from Washington, given that the Terry Schiavo incident has not yet faded from national memory?
5) Was this child's Mt disease caused by a genetic mutation, as the government implies, and wouldn't that have manifested as "ASD features" anyway?
In the concession, the government notes that the patient had a "single nucleotide change" in the mitochondrial DNA gene T2387C, implying that this was the underlying cause of her manifested "features" of autism.
While it's true that some inherited forms of Mt disease can manifest as developmental delays, (and even ASD in the form of Rhett Syndrome) these forms are linked to identified genetic mutations, of which T2387C is not involved. In fact little, if anything, is known about the function of this particular gene.
What's more, there is no evidence that this girl, prior to vaccination, suffered from any kind of "disorder" at all- genetic, mitochondrial or otherwise. Some forms of Mt disease are so mild that the person is unaware of being affected. This perfectly developing girl may have had Mt disorder at the time of vaccination, but nobody detected, or even suspected it.
And, there is no evidence to suggest that this girl would have regressed into symptoms consistent with a DSM-IV autism diagnosis without her vaccinations. If there was such evidence, then why on earth would these extremely well-funded government attorneys compensate this alleged injury in Vaccine Court? Why wouldn't they move to dismiss, or at least fight the case at trial?
6) What are the implications for research?
The concession raises at least two critical research questions: What are the causes of Mt dysfunction; and how could vaccines aggravate that dysfunction to the point of "autistic features?"
While some Mt disorders are clearly inherited, the "sporadic" form is thought to account for 75% of all cases, according to the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation. So what causes sporadic Mt disease? "Medicines or other toxins," says the Cleveland Clinic, a leading authority on the subject.
Use of the AIDS drug AZT, for example, can cause Mt disorders by deleting large segments of mitochondrial DNA. If that is the case, might other exposures to drugs or toxins (i.e., thimerosal, mercury in fish, air pollution, pesticides, live viruses) also cause sporadic Mt disease in certain subsets of children, through similar genotoxic mechanisms?
Among the prime cellular targets of mercury are mitochondria, and thimerosal-induced cell death has been associated with the depolarization of mitochondrial membrane, according to the International Journal of Molecular Medicine among several others. (Coincidently, the first case of Mt disease was diagnosed in 1959, just 15 years after the first autism case was named, and two decades after thimerosal's introduction as a vaccine preservative.)
Regardless of its cause, shouldn't HHS sponsor research into Mt disease and the biological mechanisms by which vaccines could aggravate the disorder? We still do not know what it was, exactly, about this girl's vaccines that aggravated her condition. Was it the thimerosal? The three live viruses? The two attenuated viruses? Other ingredients like aluminum? A combination of the above?
And of course, if vaccine injuries can aggravate Mt disease to the point of manifesting as autism features, then what other underlying disorders or conditions (genetic, autoimmune, allergic, etc.) might also be aggravated to the same extent?
7) What are the implications for medicine and public health?
Should the government develop and approve new treatments for "aggravated mitochondrial disease with ASD features?" Interestingly, many of the treatments currently deployed in Mt disease (i.e., coenzyme Q10, vitamin B-12, lipoic acid, biotin, dietary changes, etc.) are part of the alternative treatment regimen that many parents use on their children with ASD.
And, if a significant minority of autism cases can be linked to Mt disease and vaccines, shouldn't these products one day carry an FDA Black Box warning label, and shouldn't children with Mt disorders be exempt from mandatory immunization?
8) What are the implications for the vaccine-autism debate?
It's too early to tell. But this concession could conceivably make it more difficult for some officials to continue insisting there is "absolutely no link" between vaccines and autism.
It also puts the Federal Government's Vaccine Court defense strategy somewhat into jeopardy. DOJ lawyers and witnesses have argued that autism is genetic, with no evidence to support an environmental component. And, they insist, it's simply impossible to construct a chain of events linking immunizations to the disorder.
Government officials may need to rethink their legal strategy, as well as their public relations campaigns, given their own slightly contradictory concession in this case.
9) What is the bottom line here?
The public, (including world leaders) will demand to know what is going on inside the US Federal health establishment. Yes, as of now, n=1, a solitary vaccine-autism concession. But what if n=10% or 20%? Who will pay to clean up that mess?
The significance of this concession will unfortunately be fought over in the usual, vitriolic way -- and I fully expect to be slammed for even raising these questions. Despite that, the language of this concession cannot be changed, or swept away.
Its key words are "aggravated" and "manifested." Without the aggravation of the vaccines, it is uncertain that the manifestation would have occurred at all.
When a kid with peanut allergy eats a peanut and dies, we don't say "his underlying metabolic condition was significantly aggravated to the extent of manifesting as an anaphylactic shock with features of death."
No, we say the peanut killed the poor boy. Remove the peanut from the equation, and he would still be with us today.
Many people look forward to hearing more from HHS officials about why they are settling this claim. But whatever their explanation, they cannot change the fundamental facts of this extraordinary case:
The United State government is compensating at least one child for vaccine injuries that resulted in a diagnosis of autism.
And that is big news, no matter how you want to say it.
David Kirby is the author of "Evidence of Harm - Mercury in Vaccines and the Autism Epidemic, A Medical Controversy" (St. Martins Press 2005.
Wednesday, January 30, 2008
A Kaiser Permanente perinatologist has been the subject of numerous staff and patient complaints and his actions may have contributed to terrible medical outcomes, a newspaper has reported.
According to a Los Angeles Times investigation published Tuesday, Dr. Hamid Safari has been under scrutiny for several years and at least one review board has deemed that his conduct needs improvement.
Several instances of possibly inadequate care were cited by the newspaper, including a 2005 delivery at Kaiser's Fresno hospital in which Safari pulled so hard on the head of a baby with a vacuum extractor that the baby's spinal cord was severed and it died.
Kaiser now requires Safari to be monitored by another physician or nurse during deliveries and he is no longer allowed to perform vaginal deliveries.
In September, the state medical board accused Safari of gross negligence, seeking to revoke or suspend his license.
Safari's attorney Stephen D. Schear called the accusations "completely unwarranted."
"If you're doing thousands of high-risk deliveries over the years, it's almost inevitable that there's going to be some unfortunate cases where children die, where things don't go right," Schear said.
Another complaint centers around allegations that Safari resisted a mother's request for a Caesarean section even though the baby was likely suffering from a reduced oxygen supply. The baby girl died before she was 10 months old.
The coroner attributed her death to chronic respiratory diseases, but did not address if these were related to birth trauma.
The mother in that case filed an arbitration claim against Safari that was settled for an undisclosed sum.
Doctors and nurses have made repeated complaints to higher-ups at Kaiser about possible problems with Safari's skills and behavior, according to a Times review of interviews and documents.
The health care provider was in July fined $3 million for its handling of complaints and physician errors. Officials told the Times that Safari's actions played an important role in regulators' decision to investigate Kaiser.
One petition signed by eight of Safari's perinatal peers said they had lost confidence in Safari. But several other doctors signed a letter supporting him.
Kaiser did not let senior officials talk to the Times for its story and warned staffers at Kaiser Fresno not to speak with the newspaper.
In a statement, hospital administrator Susan Ryan said Kaiser was "committed to ensuring the safety of our patients."
Saturday, January 5, 2008
1. Spiritual Midwifery By Ina May Gaskins
2. Thinking Woman's Guide to a Better Birth By Henci Goer
3. The VBAC companion By Korte, Diana.
4. Gentle Birth choices Video
5. The birth partner : everything you need to know to help a woman through childbirth By Penny Simkin.
6. Your pregnancy and Birth By The American College Of OB/GYN (Little note: Gag! Don't recommend this book at ALL!! It was the worst pregnancy and birth book I have ever read!)
And I just finished
7. Born In The USA By Marsden Wagner, M.D., M.S.
I am still reading Birthing from within and love it so far and some Lamaze books. I hope to be able to post tomorrow more about Born In The USA as is was such an eye opening book, and was very refreshing in that an OB!!! wrote it and is saying what we all have been saying about birth all along! That Midwives need to be the primary care provider in low risk pregnancies! Gotta love this OB and I never in my life thought I would say that!
Saturday, November 17, 2007
I know many women who have been told this and have birthed babies double the birth wieght of their CPD babies. The increase in induction has increased the cesarean rate and the CPD diagnosis ad when you are induced you lack alot if not all of the natural hormones released in your body during natural labor. Womens bodies do not "fail" inductions because their bodies are working wonderfully! If that baby is not ready to come they arn't ready to come.
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
How is Circumcision Done?
Most parents don't know what is actually done
to a baby when he is circumcised. The baby is placed spread-eagle on his back on
a board and his arms and legs are strapped down so that he can't move. His
genitals are scrubbed and covered with antiseptic. His foreskin is torn from the
glans and slit lengthwise so that the circumcision instrument can be inserted.
Then his foreskin is cut off. Most parents who see what is done to a baby when
he is circumcised and how he reacts decide against circumcision and let their
baby keep his foreskin intact.
I know I did once I saw an educational video of it being done to a baby complete with sound I said Nope none of my babies will have that done. Here is a video of a circumcision.
When and why did doctors in the U.S. start circumcising babies?
Doctors in the English-speaking countries started circumcising babies in the mid-1800s "to prevent masturbation," which was blamed for causing many diseases, including epilepsy, tuberculosis, and insanity. Other reasons have been given since then, but all of them, including the claim that circumcision prevents cancer of the penis, cancer of the cervix, and venereal diseases, have been dis proven. We now know that the foreskin is a normal, sensitive, functional part of the body.
Wow, and yet even though all those reasons have been proven wrong we are still mutilating our children's penises for the sake of looks!
Is circumcision painful?
Yes. Circumcision is extremely painful - and traumatic - for a baby. Just being strapped down is frightening for a baby. The often repeated statement that babies can't feel pain is not true. Babies are as sensitive to pain as anyone else. Most babies scream frantically when their foreskin is cut off. Some defecate. Some lapse into a coma. The reason some babies don't cry when they are circumcised, is that they can't cry because they are in a state of shock. Most babies are circumcised without anesthesia. Anesthetics injected into the penis don't always work. Being stuck with a needle in the penis is itself painful for a baby, just as if would be for anyone else. Babies are rarely given pain medication right after they are circumcised or during the week to ten days it takes for the wound to heal. Pain medication is not always effective and is never 100% effective.
Hmm would you want something cut off your body if you were going to feel the whole thing?? I think not so why do this to your newborn baby as one of their first experiences in life??
Does circumcision have risks?
Yes. Like any other surgery, circumcision has risks. They include:
Complications from anesthesia
Surgical mistakes, including loss of glans and loss of entire penis
Many circumcised males suffer from:
Skin tags and skin bridges
Tearing and bleeding at the scar site
Curvature of the penis
Tight, painful erections
Feelings of having been violated
Feelings of having been mutilated
What a list of risks! I know when I asked my care provider the risks of this I was not told over 75% of the risks on this list.
I know alot of people who do it only because they are worried their child will be teased. The is a possibility but you can say the same for their hair color, eye color anything about them so why start removing body part only to prevent teasing. Would you cut off your daughters labia to keep her from being teased? Would you cut off her nipples just because others were doing it to keep her from being teased? I know I wouldn't so why should a boys penis be any different!?
Here are some links with alot of info:
Sunday, October 21, 2007
"I've been telling these guys for years that he was going to kill someone,"
said Dr. Gilbert Moran, the former ob-gyn chief. "And no one would
So the Chief of the OB department reported it and the hospital STILL kept him on. What a shame that the safety of the patients didn't come first.
Late one April night, the first of Sarah Valenzuela's twins arrived with little trouble, but the second stayed put.
Though the baby was not in distress, Kaiser Permanente perinatologist Hamid Safari attached a vacuum extractor to the boy's head to draw him out. Again and again he tugged, but still the baby would not come.
OK if that baby wasn't distressed why not let him come on his own. Its perfectly OK to let them come on their own. It can take minutes or hours. I have even seen a day go by between twins. If the baby was OK he should have just let nature do its awesome work!
It took 90 minutes and six tries -- the last with Safari on his knees, pulling. Horrified staffers -- and the boy's father -- looked on as baby Devin finally emerged. His skin was a bloodless white, his neck elongated and floppy.
His spinal cord had been severed.
OMG! I feel so badly for those poor parents! For a grown man to use all his force on that tiny baby what the hell did that OB think was gonna happen!
Safari lashed out at a nurse. "What did you do to that baby? I gave you a good baby," he said, according to a complaint letter the nurse sent to her union representative.
Yeah ok blame the nurse. That poor women was probably horrified at what she had just seen! And then for him to try and blame her! Uggg I feel sick.
Over the years, doctors and nurses repeatedly had complained to higher-ups -- including Kaiser's top medical officer in Northern and Central California -- about problems they saw in Safari's skills and behavior, according to interviews and documents.
This is a story not just of tragic medical outcomes, but of a health plan that did not prevent them.
Just tragic this little boys life could have been spared had the administrators listened to the people who watched his work everyday.
There is so much more to this story that I could go on and on about but I want you to read if for yourself. Make your own conclusion. Is this the kind of system that our women and children should be exposed to. Until we stand up and demand that the treatment of pregnant women and infants stops there will be more stories like this, more babies dying and more mothers going home with no babies or worse babies and kids living a life without their mother.
To see the full story follow the link and on the right side of the page click the print button to get the full text version.
LA Times story
Saturday, October 20, 2007
The percentage of births that are cesarean is at an all time high in the United States while the rate for a vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC) is at an all time low. Legal, medical and economic factors amalgamate to influence these rates. The recommendations of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) have also impacted the VBAC and cesarean rates. The ACOG’s recommendations are an example of defensive medicine because the recommendations are not based on scientific evidence; they were imposed solely to prevent obstetrician/gynecologists from medical malpractice lawsuits. As a result, many pregnant women are restricted in choosing a delivery method and are subjected to unnecessary cesarean sections. This paper will examine the legal, medical and economic factors concerning VBACs and cesarean sections. Next, this paper will explore why a woman with a cesarean cannot deliver vaginally in a subsequent pregnancy. Finally, this paper will discuss the ACOG’s recommendations and explain why they constitute a defensive medicine procedure.
And this is all too true. All the scare tactics they use to discourage VBAC is soley because of malpractice and fear of law suits not based on the evidence. The only thing I can say so far that I don't like was this reference:
Eliminating VBACs may result in attempting a VBAC at home or visiting a birthing center that cannot perform an emergency cesarean. Additionally, women trying to avoid another cesarean “have endangered themselves and their babies by staying at home in labor – or even staying in the hospital parking lot – until the last minute.”
VBACing at home is just as safe if not safer then VBACing in a hospital. More one on one care that can catch the signs of a rupture before it happens instead of a few nurses juggling a bunch of patients and soley relying on a machine to tell them the well being of the mom and baby, able to be relaxed and move and eat as needed to keep labor progressing and not having 20 people come in during your labor to only shove their fingers in your vagina so less chance of infection. Over all its so refreshing to see this written by someone who has no ties to the VBAC controversy. Its about time!
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Too many women bury their feelings as we are told that all that matters is a healthy baby. NO that is not ALL that matters. Yes of course we are so happy that are children are healthy but that doesn't erase the pain, the sadness, the loneliness that can come with a c/section. Some women will never get over the experience.