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*** X-posted in "Life with a Babe" ***

Any mamas that know about this, PLEASE respond. I need to figure this out before Wednesday afternoon!!

BACKGROUND: I did not have any U/S while pregnant because I was concerned about cellular changes, etc. This study was just published that confirms U/S can affect brain development in fetuses.

DD had a rough time during delivery. I was induced because of toxemia and it was a hard road. I pushed for 3.5 hours and she had a major conehead.

One of her eyelids droops slightly when she is tired. Its very slight, but it makes her face slightly assymetrical. When she is wide awake, you cannot tell but if she is tired, it looks heavier lidded on one side. It has been there since birth, and is less pronounced now than it was initially.

I mentioned it to the ped and he seemed somewhat concerned. He gave me a referral to an opthamologist to look at the eye, and another referral for a head ultrasound. My basic understanding is that before the fontanells close, they can U/S her head and look at her brain. It would tell them if there was any kind of brain bleed during the birth or whatever which may cause the issue.... And my understanding (which is very limited) is basically it would tell them what caused it (if there was a bleed) but its not like they can do anything to change that fact. He said its more likely that she just has a tiny bit of nerve damage in her facial nerves from the birth and it will resolve over time. It appears to be improved slightly in the last month or so.... Of course, a brain tumor or something may also be to blame but the facial nerve seems more plausible.

The ped brought in another ped from the same practice to have a look at her. She felt the opthamologist was the more appropriate referral. Seemed to think the U/s would be a waste of time, etc. At the time we figured why not do it just to be sure....

We have the opthamologist appt. on Wed. morning and the head U/S scheduled for the same afternoon.

After reading this article, it occurred to me that her brain is still developing. Does anyone know enough about this science to comment on whether the danger is only to developing fetuses and now that she's "cooked" (so to speak) its relatively safe. Or could we be harming her by putting an ultrasound transducer right next to her brain through the soft spot??

I am totally unsure what to do about this.


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There haven't been enough studies done on the use of U/S to be able to say. That is the problem, in my opinion. Hopefully the mouse study will spark additional studies of the effects on humans, but right now there doesn't seem to be much information at all about use on newborns or fetuses.

This is just my opinion and you can completely disregard it. The infant's brain is still very much forming. Its still floating in a sea of cerebral/spinal fluid and is more prone to certain types of injuries - such as injuries from being shaken. The brain is loose in the skull and I would think that sound waves in that medium could potentially cause global, but very mild, damage to the brain cells, particularly the ones closest to the fluid. I think such damage may not be significant enough to be diagnosed as such later in life; being just a little later in hitting developmental milestones could still be considered within the realm of normalcy.

I used to date a neuropsychologist a long time ago and back then they were talking about this theory of autism being caused by certain neurons or cells not migrating as they should. I find it very curious that ultrasounds seem to interfere with that migration, at least in mice. I cannot remember for sure whether that migration occured in utero or during infancy - but I seem to remember it occurred up until 7 years old. I might be wrong about this.

Anyway, I wouldn't do the u/s because it just doesn't seem necessary. For what its worth, our DD's left eyelid droops when she is tired. It was much more pronounced when she was a newborn and currently, at 18 months, I'm the only one who notices it anymore. And that's probably because I'm looking for it.

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An u/s is a completely inappropriate diagnostic tool for a brain bleed. You should be getting an MRI or a CT scan....if the Opthamologist thinks it is reasonable. OR you should be seeing a neurologist. I am SHOCKED at this reccomendation given that I know who your ped is and that that practice is considered highly reputable.

Who is the other ped? Who are they sending you to for opthamology?

I have both a good ped opthamologist and ped neurologist. I can give you their contact info.

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