Sunday, October 30, 2016

Meet The Baby Who Was Born Twice

Margaret Boemer went for a routine ultrasound 16 weeks into her pregnancy with her third child.

She quickly found out that things were far from routine.

"They saw something on the scan, and the doctor came in and told us that there was something seriously wrong with our baby and that she had a sacrococcygeal teratoma," the Plano, Texas, mom said in an interview shared by Texas Children's Hospital. "And it was very shocking and scary, because we didn't know what that long word meant or what diagnosis that would bring."

Sacrococcygeal teratoma is a tumor that develops before birth and grows from a baby's coccyx, the tailbone.

"This is the most common tumor we see in a newborn," said Dr. Darrell Cass, co-director of Texas Children's Fetal Center and associate professor of surgery, pediatrics and obstetrics and gynecology at Baylor College Medicine. "Even though it's the most common we see, it's still pretty rare."

Found more often in girls than boys, this tumor occurs in one out of every 35,000 births.

Unfortunately, this was not the first bad news of Boemer's pregnancy.

Originally, she had been pregnant with twins, but lost one of the babies before her second trimester.

It was a shock at 16 weeks to learn of her daughter's rare birth defect.

"Some of these tumors can be very well-tolerated, so the fetus has it and can get born with it and we can take it out after the baby's born," said Cass. "But about half of the time, they cause problems for the fetus and it's usually causing problems because of a blood flow problem."

Cass explained that the tumor is trying to grow by sucking blood flow from the baby, yet the baby is also trying to grow, too "so it becomes a competition."

"And in some instances, the tumor wins and the heart just can't keep up and the heart goes into failure and the baby dies," said Cass.

With a large tumor stealing the blood supply, Boemer's fetus was becoming more ill each day, doctors explained to the expectant mother. Something had to be done.

Although other doctors had advised her to terminate the pregnancy, Cass and his team told her about another possibility: fetal surgery. This option, though, would not be an easy road. Even worse, her baby's chances of survival would be grim.

"LynLee didn't have much of a chance," Boemer said. "At 23 weeks, the tumor was shutting her heart down and causing her to go into cardiac failure, so it was a choice of allowing the tumor to take over her body or giving her a chance at life.

"It was an easy decision for us: We wanted to give her life."

'Kind of a miracle'

She was 23 weeks and 5 days pregnant, when Cass performed the emergency fetal surgery. By this time, the tumor was nearly larger than the fetus.

Cass and Dr. Oluyinka Olutoye, his partner surgeon, operated for about five hours.

"The part on the fetus we do very, very quickly," said Cass. "It's only 20 minutes or so on the actual fetus." Most of the time is spent opening the uterus, which he described as "a big muscle lined with membranes."

"We don't want the mom's health to be jeopardized," said Cass, who explained they work carefully, both making the incision and sewing it up in order "to make that uterus be as sealed and as water tight as possible."

Still, Cass said, the tumor in this case was so large a "huge" incision was needed to get to it, so it ended up that the baby was "hanging out in the air... Essentially, the fetus is outside, like completely out, all the amniotic fluid falls out, it's actually fairly dramatic," said Cass.

During the surgery, LynLee's heart slowed down to an incredibly low rate. "It basically stopped," said Cass.

He credits the heart specialist, a key member of the team, for giving the right medication and transfusing the right amount of fluid, allowing the surgeons to continue their work.

The surgical team removed the bulk of the tumor. When they finished their operation, the surgeons placed LynLee back inside the womb and sewed her mother's uterus shut.

"It's kind of a miracle you're able to open the uterus like that and seal it all back and the whole thing works," said Cass.

'Worth every pain'

Boemer was on bed rest for the remainder of her pregnancy. Despite her pain, she marshaled her strength and made it another 12 weeks to nearly 36 weeks -- full term -- when Lynlee Hope was born for the second time via C-section on June 6.

The little fighter, named for both her grandmothers, weighed 5 pounds and 5 ounces.

Immediately, the hospital staff whisked the newborn away to the neonatal intensive care unit for an evaluation, but after this initial checkup, she was deemed healthy and transferred to the nursery.

There's a risk the fetus could be born immediately after the in utero surgery, or die.

After she was born, LynLee faced one more ordeal: removing the bits of tumor that surgeons could not reach, which had begun to grow again.

"At eight days old, she had more surgery, and they were able to remove the rest of the tumor," explained Boemer.

LynLee recovered in the NICU and weeks later, arrived in her family home.

"Baby Boemer is still an infant but is doing beautiful," said Cass, remarking that she is perfectly healthy. His one previous surgery of this kind was also a success. "I think she's about 7 now, and she sings karaoke to Taylor swift -- she's completely normal," said Cass.

While babies facing surgery undoubtedly struggle, mothers' emotional journeys might be most difficult and dramatic. As Cass describes it, first their obstetrician tells them there's something wrong and then they're told there's nothing that can be done and their babies will die and then a surgeon tells them there's something that can be done. Amazingly, some end with a healthy baby.

"It was very difficult," Boemer said.

But seeing her toddler smiling with her sisters, she added: "It was worth every pain."

Source:      CNN

Sunday, October 2, 2016

22 Ways To Keep Your Cool

Life throws us all a challenge or two along the way. Some of these challenges can easily upset our day, disturb our rhythm and generally mess with our mojo. In reaction we can lose our cool. At times, we can lose it pretty spectacularly. We are only human after all. However, one or a combination of the below can help us all keep a lid on our cool.

Here are 22 Ways to Keep Your Cool:

1. Get Some Perspective
Life is short. Too short to be losing our cool all the time. Better to stay calm and take life for what it is. Take things in our stride. Keep your cool.

2. Identify the Internal Triggers
Oftentimes, if we do a little self-reflection we can identify internal temper triggers. What is it that happens internally that causes us to lose it? How can we work on this?

3. Identify the External Triggers
Some situations and people can make it difficult to stay calm around. Once identified, we can either come up with tactics that mean we avoid them completely, or work on coping tactics to deal with them.

4. Count to 10
Or 20 or 50 or whatever works. Clichés become clichés for a reason.

5. Remember you’ll Regret Losing your Cool More Often than Not
If that’s the case what’s the point? Keep your cool.

It’s stood the test of time as a stress reliever for a reason – it works.

7. Step Outside the Situation
Ever watched others losing their cool and chuckled at how ridiculous it can all look? Like an adult sized toddler throwing a tantrum. Someone’s watching you thinking just that when you lose your head. It’s never pretty.

Feel the initial reaction of rising anger slowly slide away

9. Pause
Distance yourself from the inclination to just react.

10. Depersonalise the Situation
Feeling like the ‘victim’ of some wrong doing can make it hard to keep cool. If we depersonalise the situation we may see things a little differently.

11. Get Over Yourself!
Oftentimes a perceived dent to our ego is more to do with causing us to lose our cool than what has actually happened.

12. Picture Yourself as Someone Very Calm
How would Yoda or the Fonz deal with this situation? Not by throwing their toys out of the pram you can bet your light sabre (or Diner jukebox)!

13. Focus on Something Else
Distraction tactics can work for us here if we’re quick to utilize them. Think of something that defuses the feelings of anger building. Happy memories and feelings, thinking of loved ones can all take the steam out of anger’s sails.

14. Control What You Can Control
If we focus on what is truly under our control, rather than worrying and getting angry about what isn’t, we are in a better place all around.

15. Put Expectations to One Side
We all have expectations of both ourselves and others around us. These expectations are not always realistic or fair and can become the cause of us losing our cool. Better to revise these and do our best to accept others for who they are.

16. Less Sprinting All the Way
There’s more to life than rushing through it and getting angry when things don’t run like clockwork. Keep your cool.

17. Forget Scoring Empty Victories
Crash, bang, centre stage, puffing our chests out, taking credit, plotting and strategizing, beating the opposition, holding our hands aloft. Winning.
More likely the language of our times. Ironically it seems to lead many of us less to success and more to dissatisfaction, frustration and stress.
There’s a lot more to a contented life than scoring hollow victories.

You’re not – trust me and save yourself much headache, heartache and temper losing.

19. Reduce Friction
Too much friction in our lives can lead to our fuses getting much shorter. We can concentrate on removing and reducing as much friction as possible and leave ourselves in the best place possible for living the good life.

20. Not Empathising with Others
This is related to a number of others on this list worthy of its own spot. If try to think about things from someone else’s perspective maybe we’ll be less likely to lose our own cool. This is of course especially important for those that we care about most.

21. Be Appreciative
There’s a well quoted Tony Robbins line “Turn your expectations into appreciation”
Part of us losing our cool involves our own expectations of how we want things to be. What if we accepted them for what they were and concentrated on being appreciative for all we have instead?

Truth be told, we all lose it occasionally. It’s part of being human. We can learn to turn the frequency down on how often our blood boils. We can find habits and tactics that help us retain some calm but none of us are perfect and that’s okay. Remember, we are only human after all.

Source:     Purpose Fairy

Obesity Associated With 8 Other Cancers!!!

A new study strengthens the link between obesity and cancer, after identifying a further eight cancers that are more likely to develop with excess weight, including stomach, pancreas, and liver cancers.

But there is some good news; researchers say losing the excess weight and preventing further weight gain can help lower the risk of these cancers.

Dr. Graham Colditz, of the Washington University School of Medicine, and colleagues publish their findings in The New England Journal of Medicine.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), worldwide obesity has more than doubled since 1980, affecting more than 600 million adults in 2014.

As a result, these individuals are at increased risk of other health conditions, including some forms of cancer.

In previous research, Dr. Colditz and team identified a link between excess weight and increased risk of colon, esophageal, kidney, breast, and uterine cancers.

Now, the researchers have added another eight to the list.

'It's time to take our health and our diets seriously'

The team's findings come from an in-depth review of more than 1,000 studies conducted by the WHO's International Agency for Cancer on Research (IARC), which assessed the link between weight and cancer risk.
The researchers found sufficient evidence to suggest excess weight can increase the risk of eight cancers, in addition to the five already identified.

These cancers include:

*Gall bladder cancer
*Meningioma - a form of brain tumor
*Multiple myeloma - a type of blood cancer
*Thyroid cancer.

For the majority of these cancers, the researchers found that the higher an individual's body mass index (BMI), the higher their cancer risk.

These findings, says Dr. Colditz, show that overweight and obesity is a higher burden for cancer risk than previously thought.

"Many of the newly identified cancers linked to excess weight haven't been on people's radar screens as having a weight component," he adds.

What is more, he says the results highlight the importance of adopting a healthy lifestyle.

"Significant numbers of the U.S. and the world's population are overweight," notes Dr. Colditz.

"This is another wake-up call. It's time to take our health and our diets seriously."

"Lifestyle factors such as eating a healthy diet, maintaining a healthy weight and exercising, in addition to not smoking, can have a significant impact on reducing cancer risk. Public health efforts to combat cancer should focus on these things that people have some control over." Dr. Graham Colditz

He admits that, for many people, losing weight is challenging, but these individuals should not be disheartened.

"Rather than getting discouraged and giving up, those struggling to take off weight could instead focus on avoiding more weight gain," he adds.

While the study did not identify the precise mechanisms for the link between excess weight and cancer, the researchers note that excess body fat can cause overproduction of the hormones estrogentestosterone, and insulin, which can trigger inflammation and fuel cancer growth.

Source:     Medical News Today