While this is not an exhaustive list, listed below are some references you may want to investigate as possible resources for your center to offer clients with a poor prenatal diagnosis.
Samuel Armas -- 21 weeks in utero (FoxNews.com)
Samuel Armas -- 9 years old(FoxNews.com)
The First Annual Conference on Medical Advances in Prenatal Diagnoses was hosted by the Council on Poor Prenatal Diagnoses & Therapeutic Intervention in January of 2012.
The conference brought together professionals from many different specialty areas, including genetic researchers, ob-gyn physicians, developmental pediatricians, hospital nursing staff, medical genetic counselors, and medical students. Other participants and guests included peer ministry providers, social service support professionals, advocates for persons with disabilities and public policy specialists.
Julie Armas and her son, Samuel, both spoke at the conference, testifying to the wonderful life Samuel has lived, even with a prenatal diagnosis of spina bifida. The unforgettable 1999 picture of Samuel’s tiny finger reaching out of the womb and grasping his surgeon’s finger was printed in several newspapers worldwide, including USA Today. Samuel turned 13 in December of 2012.
You can view this full-day conference free of charge here.
While there are thousands of different birth defects, the most common are heart defects, cleft lip and cleft palate, Down syndrome and spina bifida. Approximately 150,000 children are born every year in the United States affected by one or more birth defects, according to the American Pregnancy Association.
The CDC reports that one in every 33 babies (about 3 percent) is born with a birth defect, and that birth defects are one of the leading causes of infant deaths, accounting for more than 20 percent of all infant deaths. Causes vary, including the use of alcohol, street drugs, and prescription drugs, being exposed to various infections such as cytomegalovirus or sexually transmitted infections. Genetic conditions can also be passed from parent to child.
The CDC has great information on many birth defects which you may find useful in your center at the following links:
The following information is also found at the CDC site:
CMV is the most common congenital (present at birth) viral infection in the U.S. Each year, about 5,500 (1 in 750) children in this country are born with or develop disabilities that result from congenital CMV infection. More children have disabilities due to this disease than other well-known congenital infections and syndromes, including Down syndrome, fetal alcohol syndrome, spina bifida, and pediatric HIV/AIDS.
CMV is spread from person to person by close contact with body fluids, such as blood, urine, saliva, semen, vaginal fluids, and breast milk. Once CMV is in a person's body, it stays there for life. Most people who become infected with CMV have mild, flu-like symptoms or no symptoms at all; the exceptions are infants with congenital infection or people who have weakened immune systems.
For pregnant women, sexual contact is a common source of CMV infection. Limiting sexual partners and practicing safe sex may reduce the risk of catching CMV.
Another common source of infection for pregnant women is contact with the urine or saliva of young children who are infected with CMV and are shedding the virus.
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