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What Are “Serious Games,” and How Could They Improve Neonatal Resuscitation?

Medical professionals who care for newborns must know a great deal about managing neonatal breathing complications. They should be skilled at providing resuscitation, intubation, and other forms of respiratory assistance to infants that require it. Mismanagement of neonatal breathing complications can result in a variety of serious birth injuries, such as bronchopulmonary dysplasia, pneumothorax, hypocarbia,…

New York Program Provides Virtual Doctor’s Appointments for People with Disabilities

People with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DDs) often have a difficult time getting to doctor’s appointments, and may miss out on important medical services as a result. A recently-introduced program in the state of New York aims to change that. Premier HealthCare has begun to offer psychiatric telehealth appointments to those with I/DDs. The program…

Pregnancy Basics

Pregnancy by trimester Fertilization Fertilization, the union of the egg and the sperm into a single cell called a zygote, occurs in the fallopian tube. During the following days, the single cell divides into more cells and migrates to the uterus, where it implants. After implantation, the fertilized egg is called an embryo, and at…

Thyroid issues during pregnancy

The thyroid is a small gland in the neck that produces thyroid hormones, which affect heart rate and metabolism.  A thyroid disorder occurs when the thyroid makes too much or too little of certain thyroid hormones (1).  Hyperthyroidism: This condition occurs when the thyroid is overactive, or makes too much thyroid hormone. It can cause…

Postpartum Post-traumatic Stress Disorder

Maternal-fetal medicine specialist, Shivani Patel, wrote an op-ed piece for STAT in May that detailed her experience with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) during pregnancy (1).  Eight years ago, Patel learned she had preeclampsia during her pregnancy. Preeclampsia is not an uncommon pregnancy condition, affecting roughly 5-8% of pregnant women (2). It involves high blood pressure,…

Episiotomies: Uses, Guidelines, and Recent Findings

A recent story in HuffPost entitled “Why Are We Still Cutting Women’s Vaginas During Birth?” tells the story of a woman named Rachel who experienced an episiotomy during childbirth (1). An episiotomy is an incision made to the perineum, the area between the vaginal opening and the anus, to aid in delivery (2).  Rachel heard…

Fainting and dizziness during pregnancy

According to the American Pregnancy Association, dizziness and fainting are very common during pregnancy as a result of the drastic hormonal and metabolic changes the body goes through during the first trimester (1). These changes can lower the mother’s blood pressure or blood sugar, causing dizziness and faintness. In the second trimester, the mother may…

Involuntary Sterilization of Disabled Americans: An Historical Overview

Thousands of Americans with disabilities have undergone sterilization procedures without providing informed consent. Beginning in the early 1900s, supporters of the eugenics movement sought to sterilize those with cognitive impairments in order to “cleanse” the human gene pool of “undesirable” traits. This was sanctioned by many state governments, as well as the U.S. Supreme Court…