Your experience with preemies?

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from BDCNewsEditor. Show BDCNewsEditor's posts

    Your experience with preemies?

    A story in Sunday's Boston Globe details a study at Brigham and Women's Hospital that seeks to assess the effect of mothers' voices on premature babies.  The idea came from Amir Lahav, a musician and a neurology researcher, whose wife gave birth to premature twins, Mia and Agami, 3 1/2 months early.  He wanted to provide an environment for the babies that more closely resembled the womb, so he recorded his wife's voice and played it on a small speaker in their incubators.

    Did you have a preemie?  If so, what was your experience like while your baby was in the NICU? Would you have participated in this sort of study?
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    Re: Your experience with preemies?

    I had a preemie, born at 25 weeks.  He stayed in the Beth Israel Deaconness NICU for four months. It was a really scary time but the hospital made every effort to support our whole family, and they were open to our ideas whenever possible.

    One of the nurses mentioned that we could bring a toy that replicated the sound of a heartbeat.  She said, anecdotally, that it seemed to help soothe babies.  He did seem to like it.  

    A doctor mentioned that it's hard to get families of preemies to participate in studies because their children are so fragile.  Totally understandable, but this one seems simple and intuitively appropriate.  Having struggled with leaving our little guy each day, I probably would have agreed to participate.

  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from etr9etr. Show etr9etr's posts

    Re: Your experience with preemies?

    I had a baby girl born at 26.6 (or 13 weeks early) and was at the BWH for 103 days.  I have to be honest and say that I found all the doctors and nurses there, including Dr. Ringer, to be extremely accomodating of needs as parents and helping to make a good environment.  They even had me hang a picture of our son and our dog in the incubator with our daughter. 

    While I can see no harm in playing the sound of the mother and heartbeat for the baby, so long as we highlight the importance of holding your baby and actually being there to talk to them and touch them.  While that may seem like a natural inclination for parents to want, I am not so sure it would be for everyone. 

    Today, my daughter is 16 months old and we have yet to see an issue with cognitive skills, attention, or motor.  While she was a little behind at first, she seems to have caught up pertty well and I have yet so see any learning problems (but only time will tell). 

    I would like to think that the fact my husband and I made it in there to see her everyday had something to do with it,  and I am sure it could not hae hurt for her to hear fetal sounds and my voice. . . .I am not sure that the sounds of the NICU have hindered her.  (thought I can say that we we were in a hospital visiting someone recently, she heard they IV beeping and walked right over to it), as if it sounded remotely familiar. . .Also, when we went to the hospital to visit, she went right to one of the nurses who was a primary care taker and stared at her and touched her. . .it was kind of cute to think she may have well remembered her.

    As far as the study goes, I would have participated.  I participated in all the studies they asked us to participate in, mainly because I felt like it was not subjecting her to anything that woudl hinder her, it could only help.  I think what can be hard for parents in the NICU, especially at a research hospital, is that they are ALWAYS doing studies.
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    Re: Your experience with preemies?

    I had a 31.5 week preemie who spent a little over a month in the NICU at MGH. I definitely would have participated in this study, though I was lucky - I was able to practically live at the NICU since I was in grad school at the time and didn't have to choose whether to use maternity leave time for NICU days or after he came home.

    As much as the experience can be, our time at MGH was a good one - my son was an old enough preemie that he was not very fragile after the first week or so. The nurses were amazing, and MGH has a great NICU setup with all babies in private or semi-private rooms that allow one parent to room in at all times.  We consider ourselves very lucky to have had our kids at Mass General. Never expected to need the NICU (I had no risk factors for preterm birth), but it was a wonderful place to be during such a scary time.
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    Re: Your experience with preemies?

    My daughter was born at 33 weeks at St. Elizabeth's.  The NICU doctors and nurses there were great.  They took great care of her, but also had a lot of good advice and emotional support for the parents.  She was there for 3.5 weeks and I usually spent about 10-12 hours a day sitting next to her crib or holding her as much as I could.  I would have definitely participated in a study such as this, but would not have spent any less time at the hospital.  The component of being there and holding her and touching her could not be replaced by anything in my opinion.