Overcoming A High-Risk Pregnancy To See My Son’s Smile

Cooper-Slater1

Its been almost a year since our beautiful baby boy was born but Cooper’s time in my belly was neither easy nor a sure thing. At 20 weeks pregnant, when I went in for my anatomical scan, we got more news then just the sex of the baby. I could tell something was wrong when the technician began doing an echo, because as a nurse I knew that this test isn’t typically performed for healthy pregnancies. At just 20 weeks gestation, Cooper was diagnosed with hypoplastic left heart syndrome, or HLHS.

To say the diagnosis was a shock would be an understatement, Full Entry »

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A Nurse’s Story: To Witness Life As It Starts

When I was a little girl I loved to take care of people. I played with my dolls and cared for them using bottles, baby carriages and anything else I could get my hands on to make sure they were always neat and clean.

Long after I should have outgrown my doll years, those little dolls were still placed neatly on the shelves, practically in mint condition. I’d like to think that the years I spent caring for my little dolls was a sign that I would eventually go into the nursing profession.

I graduated nursing school in May 2008. With the profession being in high demand and school becoming increasingly competitive, the feeling of accomplishment starts at graduation.

Whilst my fellow graduates were frantically applying for jobs at every hospital within a 50-mile radius, I deliberately filled out 1 application to 1 institution, Texas Children’s Hospital, with 1 specific goal in mind…

“To witness life as it starts.” Full Entry »

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Pregnancy And Nutrition: What To Do When Eating For Two

Now that the Pavilion for Women is open for business, it’s time to talk about the building blocks of healthy moms and babies — proper nutrition! All pregnant women have different nutritional needs, but here are a few general guidelines to get you started on the path to a healthy pregnancy. Full Entry »

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“My Daughter Has An Ovarian Cyst”

Ovarian cysts are very common in girls, and there are many times throughout a young woman’s life when cysts may occur. The good news is that many of these cysts are small and self-limiting. Nonetheless, having an ovarian cyst may be a source of anxiety as they can cause pain or other hormonal disruptions.

With the advances in prenatal ultrasounds, it’s now possible to pick up ovarian cysts in neonates. These cysts are usually due to maternal hormonal exposure in the womb. Cysts found prenatally should be followed up with another ultrasound sometime after delivery or ordered at the baby’s first visit. Because these cysts are frequently due to hormones, most cysts should resolve without intervention. Rarely, surgical intervention may be needed when ovarian cysts persist or grow larger.

In prepubertal children, it’s possible for small ovarian cysts to be present because the body is growing and preparing to be a young woman soon. However, some cysts Full Entry »

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Is My Daughter’s Period Normal?

The time of your daughter’s first period can be a time of excitement and anxiety. The average age of the first period is 12 ½ years. Before periods occur, there are other signs of puberty to indicate that a young girl’s body is changing. Usually breast development happens 2 years before the first period. Other signs include under arm hair, pubic hair and body odor presence.

It is common for girls to have irregular cycles when they first begin. This irregularity usually works itself out within 3 years. Cycles that are regular from the very beginning should stay regular. Whenever cycles start, it is helpful to write things down on a calendar to determine how often they are taking place and how long they last.

For most girls, periods occur every 21-45 days in the first year, 21-34 days by the third year and last less than 7 days in length. If cycles are persistently irregular, have Full Entry »

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