Pregnancy and Lactation Weekly Digest

For the Week Ending October 10, 2021. 

COVID-19 Vaccines International Pregnancy Exposure Registry (C-VIPER)

More than 8,000 pregnant vaccinated women are already participating in our survey.

Help us understand the impact of COVID-19 vaccines on pregnancy and babies. Be a part of it!

Click here to Register.

Healthful Woman

Dr. Nathan Fox, a maternal fetal medicine specialist in New York and Emily Oster’s “favorite expert,” hosts this podcast. Listen here.

This is important for you because it gets great reviews, and why not learn something on your commute or morning walk?

Babies in space

Humans have done a bit of planning and preparation for how to survive as a species if we are forced to leave Earth for whatever reason. But not much of that planning has involved procreation- an essential part of our species’ survival. This could be a problem. The exposure to radiation that occurs during space travel can ablate stem cells, causing infertility, and no one knows if embryonic development and childbirth in space or after a spaceflight would even be possible. Read more here.

This is important for you because it’s nice to know someone’s thinking ahead.

White noise: good or bad?

Parental sleep deprivation is bad, so anything that helps baby (and mommy) get to sleep is good. Right? White noise may help… but can it damage your baby’s hearing? If you put your white noise machine at the highest setting and put it in the crib with your infant, it may reach a decibel level (a measure of loudness) that has been shown to cause hearing loss. Thankfully, there is a simple solution: put the machine across the room or just turn it down. Read more here.

This is important for you because there is a simple solution!

Milk kinship

Muslim countries generally don’t have milk banks, which can enable preemies in NICUs to get breast milk instead of formula, helping protect them from infections. This is because of a concept in Islam called milk kinship, which states that if a mother nurses a baby, they have a parent-child bond. It is a beautiful idea, but to avoid future incestuous relationships between milk-siblings each milk donor and baby pair would have to be tracked, and this would make anonymous milk banks impossible. Even so, Iran–which follows the Shia, rather than the Suni branch of Islam–has made it happen. Read more here.

This is important for you because when there’s a will, there’s a way.

The most popular article on The Pulse this week was Having a Baby Who Has a Cleft Lip or Palate: What You Need to Know. Read it here.

Diana Gitig
Dr. Diana Gitig has a Ph.D. in cell biology and genetics from Cornell University, and has been writing about issues in biology – from molecular biology to cancer to immunology to neuroscience to nutrition to agriculture - for the past fifteen years. She has three teenaged children.

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