February 17, 2010
Volume 12, Issue 4
Midwifery Today E-News
“Prenatal Ultrasound Risks”
Subscribe • Print Page
Search Archive • Index

Welcome to Midwifery Today E-News !


Midwifery Today Online Store

What's black and white…

MT online store

…read by birth professionals around the world, filled with informative articles and inspiring birth stories, and shows up in your postal mailbox four times a year? MIDWIFERY TODAY!
 
Subscribe and make sure you receive our upcoming issue on Homebirth.
To order



This issue of Midwifery Today E-News is brought to you by:

Look below for more info!



Midwifery Today Conferences

A full-day workshop is a great way to learn more about birth.

When you attend our conference in Philadelphia, April 2010, you can choose from a variety of full-day classes, including a two-day class on Traditional Midwifery Skills. There are also single-day classes such as Beginning Midwifery, Herb Workshop, Spanish Language for Birth, Breech Workshop, and First and Second Stage Difficulties.

Learn more about the Philly 2010 conference and get a complete program.


Ina May Gaskin ~ Elizabeth Davis ~ Michel Odent

Learn about birth from these great teachers when you attend our conference in Strasbourg, France, September 29 – October 3, 2010. Planned classes include Prolonged Pregnancy, Prolonged Labor, Managing Hemorrhage, Posterior Position, and Preventing and Managing Birth Complications at Home.

Learn more about the Strasbourg conference and get a complete program.


Come to Moscow! Learn about birth!

Plan now to attend the “Birthing in Love: Everyone's Right” conference this June in Moscow, Russia. You'll be able to choose from classes such as Russian Method of Waterbirth, Traditional Birth Practices from Russia, Midwifery Education Possibilities for Russia, The First Hour after Birth, and Prolonged Labor. There will also be a full-day Hands-on Skills Workshop, as well as full-day classes on Shoulder Dystocia, Breech Birth in Water and Improving Your Practice with Research, Insights and Realities.

Learn more about the Russia conference and view the complete program.

In This Week’s Issue:


Quote of the Week

“Although we now have sufficient scientific data to be able to say that routine prenatal ultrasound scanning has no effectiveness and may very well carry risks, it would be naive to think that routine use will not continue.”

Marsden Wagner, MD


Shop for yourself, shop for a friend, and give to Midwifery Today!

Use iGive, where with every transaction a portion goes to benefit Midwifery Today, Inc. Raise a penny (or more) per search and generate donations from any of the 700+ stores listed with iGive, ranging up to 26%. Also, check out the new searchable coupons and deals, where you will find all available, up-to-the-minute offers and specials.
Start here: http://www.igive.com and select Midwifery Today, Inc., as your cause in step 1. (It only takes a minute.)


The Art of Midwifery

To test vaginal blood for placental abruption:
Take a plain red-topped tube (not a serum separator tube) and mix in it, by shaking, 1 cc blood from perineum, 5 cc tap water, 8–10 drops of 10 percent potassium hydroxide or sodium hydroxide. In the presence of fetal blood, the solution will turn cherry red; you then know there is an abruption. If the solution turns green (like meconium), the blood is maternal and you can assume there is no abruption.

Jeanne Teel, CNM and Kate Simon, CNM
Excerpted from Midwifery Today's Wisdom of the Midwives: Tricks of the Trade, Volume II
View table of contents / Order the book


ALL BIRTH PRACTITIONERS: The techniques you've perfected over months and years of practice are valuable lessons for others to learn! Share them with E-News readers by sending them to mtensubmit@midwiferytoday.com.


Send submissions, inquiries, and responses to newsletter items to: mtensubmit@midwiferytoday.com.


RSS Feed Subscribe to the Birth Products RSS feed for information about the products available from Midwifery Today. Find out what's new, what's on sale and more.

RSS Feed Subscribe to the Web Updates RSS feed to stay on top of what's new or highlighted on the Midwifery Today Web site. Be alerted when conference programs go online, new articles are posted and more.

News Flash

One Month Later: An Update from the Bumi Sehat Team in Haiti

One month after an earthquake devastated Haiti, the Bumi Sehat team is working hard to make the Bumi Sehat Mother and Child Clinic in St. Helen Parish, Jacmel, Haiti, a sustainable medical institution. The following is a recent update from the Bumi Sehat Haiti medical team, which consists of midwives Robin Lim and Kelly Dunn, and emergency medic Alexander Chudis:

"Bumi Sehat has rented a large wooden house, built in 1887. Though not the prettiest, it has survived many earthquakes without damage. This Bumi house will serve as a staff headquarters, and educational facility for trainings, capacity building, environmental education, women's groups, handicraft and art center, etc. … Even though The Bumi Sehat clinic is not operational yet, the medical team has done patient care at St. Michel Hospital, St. Helen's camp, The Emmanuel Medical Center in Caye Jacmel and Park Pinchinant, the tent city where an estimated 4,000 people are camped."

During their first 13 days in Haiti, the Bumi Sehat medical team has assisted:

  • 7 births
  • 85 prenatal care visits
  • 99 postpartum/breastfeeding support visits
  • 285 pediatric care patients
  • 15 adult illness and wound care patients

Please read updates on relief work regarding the devastating earthquake in Haiti, January 2010, on this page: Earthquake in Haiti 2010 Updates


Research

US Women Twice as Likely to Receive Ultrasound Compared to 10 Years Ago

Pregnant women in the US are much more likely to undergo repeated prenatal ultrasound exams now than they were 10 years ago, according to research recently published in the journal Medical Care.

In a study conducted by Northwestern University's Department of Preventive Medicine, researchers looked at the average number of prenatal ultrasounds per pregnancy and percent of prenatal visits that included an ultrasound exam as recorded by hospitals on the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey forms filled out between 1995 and 2000 and again in 2005 and 2006.

Results showed that, for low- and high-risk pregnant women, the average number of ultrasounds per pregnancy increased from 1.3 to 2.1 and from 2.2 to 4.2, respectively.

"In an adjusted analysis, the odds of a woman receiving an ultrasound in 2005–2006 were twice those of a visit in 1995–1997," researchers noted, adding that women deemed "high-risk" were almost twice as likely as those in the "low-risk" group to receive an ultrasound during a prenatal visit.

— Siddique, Juned, et al., 2009. Med Care 47 (11) 1129–35.


Please support our advertisers!

Get your MSN in Nurse-Midwifery from UC Online

advertiser

Midwifery is the hidden gem of the nursing field. This CCNE-accredited MSN combines the quality and high standards of UC’s College of Nursing with the flexibility of online studies. Perform your clinicals in your own community, gain expert knowledge from an experienced faculty, and graduate in just over two years. Learn more.



Problems with Sound and Heat in Prenatal Ultrasound

One challenge that ultrasound operators face is keeping the transducer positioned over the part of the fetus the operator is trying to visualize. When fetuses move away from the stream of high-frequency sound waves, they may be feeling vibrations, heat or both. As the FDA warned in 2004, "ultrasound is a form of energy, and even at low levels, laboratory studies have shown it can produce physical effect in tissue, such as jarring vibrations and a rise in temperature."(9) This is consistent with research conducted in 2001 in which an ultrasound transducer aimed directly at a miniature hydrophone placed in a woman's uterus recorded sound "as loud as a subway train coming into the station."(10)

A rise in temperature of fetal tissue—especially since the expectant mother cannot even feel it—might not seem alarming, but temperature increases can cause significant damage to a developing fetus's central nervous system, according to research.(11) Across mammalian species, elevated maternal or fetal body temperatures have been shown to result in birth defects in offspring.(12) An extensive review of literature on maternal hyperthermia in a range of mammals found that "central nervous system (CNS) defects appear to be the most common consequence of hyperthermia in all species, and cell death or delay in proliferation of neuroblasts [embryonic cells that develop into nerve cells] is believed to be one major explanation for these effects."(13)

Why should neurodevelopmental defects in rats or other mammals be of concern to expecting women? Because, as Cornell University researchers proved in 2001, brain development proceeds in the same manner "across many mammalian species, including human infants."(14) The team found "95 neural developmental milestones" that helped them pinpoint the sequence of brain growth events in different species.(15) Therefore, if repeated experiments show that elevated heat caused by ultrasound damages fetal brains in rats and other mammals, one can logically assume that it can harm human brains, too.

In fact, the FDA and professional medical associations know that prenatal ultrasound can be dangerous to humans, which is why they have consistently warned against the nonmedical or "keepsake" ultrasound portrait studios that have cropped up in malls throughout the country.(16)

The risks to the baby are potentially higher in commercial enterprises due to the higher acoustic output required for high-definition images, a potentially long session—as technicians hunt for suitable images—and the employment of ultrasound operators who may have no medical background or appropriate training. These variables, along with factors such as cavitation (a bubbling effect caused by ultrasound that can damage cells) and on-screen safety indicators that may be inaccurate by a factor ranging from 2–6,(17) make the impact of ultrasound uncertain even in expert hands. Quite simply, if ultrasound can injure babies, it can cause the same damage whether done for routine, diagnostic or "entertainment" purposes.

References

  1. Rados, Carol. 2004. FDA Cautions Against Ultrasound "Keepsake" Images. FDA Consumer Magazine. www.fda.gov/fdac/features/2004/104_images.html. Accessed 11 Sep 2005.
  2. Samuel, Eugenie. 2001. Fetuses can hear ultrasound examinations. New Scientist. www.newscientist.com/article/dn1639-fetuses-can-hear-ultrasound-examinations-.html Accessed 11 May 2006.
  3. Miller, M.W., et al. 2002. Hyperthermic teratogenicity, thermal dose and diagnostic ultrasound during pregnancy: implications of new standards on tissue heating. Int J Hyperthermia 18(5): 361–84.
  4. Ibid.
  5. Graham Jr., M., M.J. Edwards and M.J. Edwards. 1998. Teratogen Update: Gestational Effects of Maternal Hyperthermia Due to Febrile Illnesses and Resultant Patterns of Defects in Humans. Teratology 58: 209–21.
  6. Clancy, B., R.B. Darlington and B.L. Finlay. 2001. Translating developmental time across mammalian species. Neuroscience 105(1): 7–17.
  7. Ibid.
  8. See note 9 above.
  9. See note 13 above.

Caroline Rodgers
Excerpted from "Questions About Prenatal Ultrasound and the Alarming Increase in Autism," Midwifery Today, Issue 80
Read the full article: http://www.midwiferytoday.com/articles/ultrasoundrodgers.asp
View table of contents / Order the back issue


Please support our advertisers!

Pathways Magazine: Your resource for family wellness

Pathways Magazine provides vital resources for family wellness. Our articles give parents the necessary information to actively participate in their families' natural health choices. Geared towards new parenting, there are always articles on birth and pregnancy from the vitalistic, midwifery perspective. A must have for holistic education in your practice.

www.pathwaystofamilywellness.org



Featured Products

Sick and tired of seeing birth misrepresented in the media?

Laboring Under an Illusion

Then you need Laboring Under an Illusion: Mass Media Childbirth vs. the Real Thing. Explore media-generated myths about childbirth as you watch over 100 video clips chosen by anthropologist Vicki Elson. This DVD is a thought-provoking tour of diverse attitudes and practices, and an enlightening look at how media influences our attitudes toward birth. Get the DVD.


Learn how sexual abuse affects women during pregnancy and childbirth and what you can do to help.

Survivor Moms

Survivor Moms: Women's Stories of Birthing, Mothering and Healing after Sexual Abuse was written to help break down the isolation pregnant women and their caregivers often feel—as though they were the only ones having to cope with these challenges. You'll be able to read excerpts from 81 women's stories of birthing, mothering and healing after childhood sexual abuse. The book also includes some complete narratives, discussion of implications of women's experiences for their care, suggestions for working together during maternity care and beyond, resources to consult, and information from current research.

Suitable for both caregivers and pregnant survivors, Survivor Moms will help anyone whose life has been touched by sexual abuse. Published by Motherbaby Press, an imprint of Midwifery Today. Get the book.


What has driven hospitals
and insurance companies to turn birth into
a commercial, assembly line process?

Find out when you watch Pregnant in America, a documentary that examines our current childbirth system and the direction U.S. obstetrics might be headed. You'll learn about the dramatic rise in cesareans, misconceptions regarding pain, and the use of numerous interventions to speed the process of birth. This DVD will give women and their families a different view of birth than is available through the mainstream media. It includes interviews with well-known childbirth experts, including Marsden Wagner, Ina May Gaskin, Barbara Harper and Robbie Davis-Floyd.
To Order


Put the gift of beautiful birth in her hands.

Brought to Earth by Birth

Give Brought to Earth by Birth, a collection of black and white photographs by Harriette Hartigan, one of the world's master birth photographers. It makes a beautiful gift for your midwife or doula, for expectant or new moms, for grandmothers and for anyone who loves babies and birth. And remember to order a copy for yourself!
Order the book.


The Pink Kit

Prepare your body for birth with The Pink Kit Package.

This multi-media kit includes exercises in directed breathing and common body language and touch. You'll learn how you and your partner can take an active role in the birth process. If you're a midwife or doula, you need this to share with your clients. Order The Pink Kit.


Learn the how and why of diagnostic testing.

Understanding Diagnostic Tests by Anne Frye will give you a holistic perspective on test results. The 7th edition is updated and expanded by around 395 pages, to give you 1365 pages packed with valuable information. To Order

Understanding Diagnostic Tests


Web Site Update

The Cut article photoRead this article excerpt from Midwifery Today recently posted to our Web site:

  • The Cut—by Linda May Kallestein
    This article, illustrated with vibrant photographs, will send a chill down your spine. The author invites us to witness, through her writing, the female genital mutilation of a 14-year-old girl, along with the preparation and village celebration that accompanies it.

Read these article excerpts from the most recent issue of Midwifery Today newly posted to our Web site:

  • Documented Causes of UnneCesareans—by Judy Slome Cohain
    “A recently coined term, unneCesareans, concisely describes the mode of delivery for 25% of low-risk first births in most Western countries. Evaluation of Cesarean Delivery, published by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) in 2000, showed a lack of evidence of improved medical outcomes with the widespread use of cesareans for low-risk, full-term primiparas. Therefore, the term ‘unnecessary’ is appropriate in the sense of medical outcomes.”
  • What Is a Birth without Loving Touch?—by Naolí Vinaver
    “It is through touch that energy can be shared, uplifted, rooted, moved and used as fuel, as we give it and receive it. This is why touch and massage for pregnancy and birth can be especially important, as women in labor need to move a lot of energy through themselves, give themselves into a lot of energy, and allow a great many changes in their souls and bodies in order to open up to give birth.”

Please support our advertisers!

Trust Birth Conference

advertiser

Trust Birth Conference in Redondo Beach, CA. March 12–14, 2010 with preconference sessions beginning the 10th. Speakers such as Dr. Sarah Buckley, Gloria Lemay, Gail Hart, Lisa Barrett, Claire Hall, Karen Strange, Shonda Parker, Jenny West, Dr. Paul Fleiss, Dr. Jeanne Ohm, and more. ACNM, MEAC, CAM/BRN—CEUs. Group discounts available!

www.trustbirthconference.com Contact Kristi: tbconference@trustbirth.com



Advertising Opportunities

Midwifery Today E-News Special

Start off the New Year with a bang: save 20% on a 4-insertion contract with Midwifery Today E-News. That's 4 graphic ads for only $320 or 4 text ads for only $240. This special offer ends February 28, 2010, and space is limited. [ Contact our ad director for more information at: ads@midwiferytoday.com ]

Online Coupon Page

Use our spring online coupon page to pass savings on to your customers. Take a peek at our sample page. [ Learn more here ]

Education Opportunities Page

Reach prospective students online with our Education Opportunities Page. It is the solution for promoting your midwifery education programs and CE courses. [ Learn More ]

Contact our Advertising Director at: ads@midwiferytoday.com
View more advertising options at: http://www.midwiferytoday.com/ads/


Come Meet a Legend: Sister MorningStar

Sister MorningStar

Come meet the woman who changed the history of birth into her/story of empowerment! International midwifery and birth preservationist Sister MorningStar will be at the Midwifery Today Conference in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, this April, where she will be signing her newest book:
The Power of Women, Instinctual Birth Stories.

Order your copy of the book. Come to the conference.



Question of the Week

Q: My son, my first child, was born early at 35 weeks and no one was ever able to tell me why. My labor was very fast once my water broke (2 hrs). He had to visit the NICU at the hospital for over a week due to respiratory and feeding issues. I want a homebirth this time around so badly. What natural methods can I do to increase my chances that I'll go to at least 37 weeks this time around? Thank you.

— Jill Klink


SEND YOUR RESPONSE to mtensubmit@midwiferytoday.com with "Question of the Week" in the subject line. Please indicate the topic of discussion *and the E-News issue number* in the message.


Question of the Week Responses

Q: I have a question about fibroids in pregnancy.

I am currently 5-1/2 months pregnant with my first baby. At 16 weeks, an ultrasound showed that I have three large fibroids in my uterus, ranging in size from 4–6 cm. The 6 cm fibroid is located directly in the center of my placenta (which is at the top of my uterus), and the placenta is attached to this fibroid. Additionally, both edges of my placenta seemed to have separated some. Also, the two other fibroids (4 cm and 5 cm) are located on either side of my cervix; so unless they shrink or move, I am told that I will have to deliver by c-section. My midwife screened me out for a homebirth. There is also concern about me hemorrhaging at birth because of the fibroids, and of the placenta not delivering properly because it is attached to the placenta.

Is there anything I can do to facilitate a more natural birth—hopefully not a c-section—and to avoid hemorrhaging and placental delivery problems? I am drinking 2–3 cups of raspberry leaf/nettle tea a day, and I am working hard to build up my iron levels with green leafy vegetables and yellow dock tincture.

— Jackie Ladomato

A: I had one client who used Organic Excellence, a natural progesterone cream, topically for several fibroids visible by early ultrasound. She applied 1/4 tsp of the cream over the fibroids twice a day until 36 weeks. They were no longer visible when she had her 36 week ultrasound. She delivered her baby at home.

— Constance Miles, LM, CPM

A: Cesarean should not be considered in your case because you will lose too much blood. But you should not have a homebirth. Write to me at judyslome@hotmail.com. I would like to converse with you and stay in touch. I wonder if macrobiotic-style diet would shrink the fibroids?

— Judy Slome Cohain

A: In Midwifery Today, Issue 25, Judy Edmunds, CPM, wrote an article entitled, "Birth Insights: Facing Fibroids." This is the personalized management plan she prescribed for her client, whose fibroids were high enough in the uterus to allow for a homebirth:

"Kathy's personalized management plan included restricting estrogenic foods (fats, dairy, meats); eliminating xanthines (tea, coffee, chocolate and cola), which can stimulate fibroid growth; emphasizing vegetables and vegetable juices (especially carrot juice, which inhibits tumor growth), whole grains, vegetarian protein sources, fresh fruits, high-iron food and seafood. We added top quality prenatal supplements, including at least 400 I.U. vitamin E and 500 mg. bioflavinoids; homeopathic remedies including Silicea, which stimulates the organism to reabsorb fibrous tissues and Pulsatilla for heartburn; and rest and positioning for pressure symptoms."

— Midwifery Today staff

Midwifery Today Issue 25 can be ordered.


Responses to any Question of the Week may be sent to E-News at any time. Write to mtensubmit@midwiferytoday.com. Please indicate the topic of discussion *and the E-News issue number* in the subject line or in the message.


Think about It

According to a research study published in the February 2010 issue of the journal Obstetrics and Gynecology, the average birth weight for a baby born in the US has steadily decreased over the past 15 years.

Using data from the US National Center for Health Statistics, which included 36,827,828 singleton neonates born at 37–41 weeks gestation between 1990 and 2005, researchers concluded that there were decreases in birth weights across the board: a 1.4 percent decrease in birth weight for the overall population and a 2.2 percent decrease in the homogenous, low-risk subgroup.

Researchers reported that the decreases "were steeper after 1999 and persisted in regression analyses adjusted for maternal and neonate characteristics, gestational length, cesarean delivery, and induction of labor."

— Donahue, Sara M.A., MPH, et al., 2010. "Trends in Birth Weight and Gestational Length Among Singleton Term Births in the United States: 1990–2005" Obstet Gynecol. 115(issue 2, part 1):357–64.


Like E-News?
You’ll love Midwifery Today magazine!



Only letters sent to the E-News official e-mail address, mtensubmit@midwiferytoday.com, will be considered for inclusion. Letters sent to ANY OTHER e-mail addresses will not be considered.


Classified Advertising

Tell our readers about your business. Just $35/issue ($125 for four) gives you 30 words to promote your products or services. http://www.midwiferytoday.com/ads/enews.asp or ads@midwiferytoday.com


Remember to share this newsletter

You may forward it to as many friends and colleagues as you wish—it's free!

Want to stop receiving E-News or change your e-mail address? Or would you like to subscribe? Then please visit our easy-to-use subscription management page.

On this page you will be able to:

  • start receiving any of our e-mail newsletters
  • stop receiving any of our e-mail newsletters
  • change the version (text or HTML) that you receive
  • change the e-mail address to which newsletters are delivered

If you have difficulty, please send a complete description of the problem, including any error messages, to our newsletter.


Learn even more about birth!

Midwifery Today Magazine—mention code 940 when you subscribe.

 1-Year Subscription2-Year Subscription
United States$55$105
Canada / Mexico$65$125
All other countries$75$145

E-mail inquiries@midwiferytoday.com or call 1-800-743-0974 to learn how to order.

Or subscribe online.


How to order our products mentioned in this issue:

Secure online shopping

We accept Visa and MasterCard at the Midwifery Today Storefront.

Order by postal mail

We accept Visa; MasterCard; and check or money order in U.S. funds.

Midwifery Today, Inc.
PO Box 2672
Eugene, OR 97402, USA

Order by phone or fax

We accept Visa and MasterCard.

Phone (U.S. and Canada; orders only):  1-800-743-0974

Phone (worldwide):  +1 541-344-7438

Fax:  +1 541-344-1422


E-News subscription questions or problems

Editorial submissions, questions or comments for E-News

Editorial for print magazine

Conference

Advertising

For all other matters

All questions and comments submitted to Midwifery Today E-News become the property of Midwifery Today, Inc. They may be used either in full or as an excerpt, and will be archived on the Midwifery Today Web site.


Midwifery Today E-News is published electronically every other Wednesday. We invite your questions, comments and submissions. We'd love to hear from you! Write to us at: mtensubmit@midwiferytoday.com. Please send submissions in the body of your message and not as attachments.


Disclaimer

This publication is presented by Midwifery Today, Inc., for the sole purpose of disseminating general health information for public benefit. The information contained in or provided through this publication is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be, and is not provided as, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Midwifery Today, Inc., does not assume liability for the use of this information in any jurisdiction or for the contents of any external Internet sites referenced, nor does it endorse any commercial product or service mentioned or advertised in this publication. Always seek the advice of your midwife, physician, nurse or other qualified health care provider before you undergo any treatment or for answers to any questions you may have regarding any medical condition.

Copyright Notice

The content of E-News is copyrighted by Midwifery Today, Inc., and, occasionally, other rights holders. You may forward E-News by e-mail an unlimited number of times, provided you do not alter the content in any way and that you include all applicable notices and disclaimers. You may print a single copy of each issue of E-News for your own personal, noncommercial use only, provided you include all applicable notices and disclaimers. Any other use of the content is strictly prohibited without the prior written permission of Midwifery Today, Inc., and any other applicable rights holders.

© 2010 Midwifery Today, Inc. All Rights Reserved.


Midwifery Today: Each One Teach One!