Do You Want To Get Involved in the Medical Field of Pediatrics?
I have a surprise for you!
Have a look at this incredible miracle – the miracle of a new life! The video clip is unedited so you get it exactly the way it was taken – sound and all!
This is a video clip of the birth of my brother’s daughter’s son. The baby was born by Caesarian Section with an epidural regional block.
Epidural regional block is where they give the mother local anesthetic which blocks pain impulses from travelling through the spinal cord to the brain. The mother is totally awake and can experience the wonder of birth, and experiences no pain during the delivery.
Note the miracle of a baby entering into this world. Do you agree, it is more than a mere piece of physiology, it is an awesome miracle!
A number of close family members are present. This is the way it should be. In modern times in first world countries, most births occur in a hospital, as opposed to a century ago where most births took place at home.
Let’s Have a Look at the Medical Team! First the Obstetrician…
The obstetrician – the medical specialist responsible for the safe delivery of the baby.
The obstetrician has kept an eye on the mother and baby and has supervised the pregnancy over the previous 9 months. Now after numerous visits, examinations and ultrasound scans, the big moment has arrived!
The family physician is assisting the obstetrician with the delivery.
The Anesthetist’s Contribution…
The anesthetist – the specialist who ensures that the mommy doesn’t experience any pain and is also primarily responsible for the safety of the mother.
It doesn’t show in the video clip, but the anesthetist has injected a long acting local anesthetic close to the spinal cord, making the operation to deliver the baby by C-section painless for the mother.
He also ensures that the mother is in perfect condition to deliver the baby by giving intravenous fluids while he is monitoring her vital signs.
The Pediatrician’s Contribution…
The pediatrician – the specialist who is in charge of the baby’s life, health and safety aspects.
The pediatrician receives the newborn-baby and runs through a check lists: airway, breathing, circulation, assessing the anatomy and physiology, checking for a number of possible genetic defects, etc!
Major changes are happening in the lungs at the time of birth. Are they inflating properly for the first time? (Judging by the healthy crying I would make it a definite “YES!”)
Equally major changes occur in an instant in the heart and blood vessels. The baby’s blood circulation in the womb (fetal placenta circulation) starts operating independent from the mommy for the first time.
The new blood circulation will have to deal with the respiratory system, receiving oxygen and secreting carbon dioxide. The pediatrician checks the eyes, counts the fingers and toes – and in an instant runs through volumes of medical information ensuring the baby is safe, healthy and normal.
If any emergency situations develop or if abnormalities are found, a whole new protocol kicks into action instantly and almost reflexively.
The pediatrician also looks at the baby’s color. He may notice cyanosis or jaundice. And in what didn’t take much longer than a couple of minutes. He hands the baby to a nurse who places the little miracle in mommy’s arms and she holds her new born baby for the first time.
Cyanosis means the baby is not getting enough oxygen. The pediatrician will have to give oxygen enriched air to the baby, but he/she needs to be careful as 100% oxygen will damage the baby’s retinas and will lead to blindness!
Jaundice is a condition that can happen in the first few days of a baby’s life. It turns the baby’s skin, eyes and mucous membranes a yellow color. The yellow color is caused by bilirubin (a chemical that forms when red blood cells break down).
The Nurses’ Contributions…
Well trained nursing staff assist these doctors with their multiple tasks. A registered nurse assists the obstetrician with the C-section, another registered nurse specializing in obstetrics assists the pediatrician and one or two nursing assistants take care of general theater tasks and support to the other medical professionals.
This is a highly dedicated, well oiled team with one thing in mind: getting this new baby safely into this world while keeping both patients, baby and mother, as comfortable as possible.
Nursing is a great and noble profession – the caring profession. I honor and esteem nursing professionals highly. I consider professional nurses as my colleagues.
Sadly some doctors have forgotten the essence and importance of caring for patients and some doctors feel that verbally abusing nursing staff is their right. Don’t ever become a doctor like that. Respect all the people you work with, even the tea ladies and cleaners.
The obstetrician controls the bleeding and, now somewhat more relaxed, begins to stitch up the surgical incisions.
Do you identify with any of these medical professionals on the video-clip?
Would you like to become a pediatrician?
You will have to first become a doctor and then do an internship/residency of 3-4 years in pediatrics before qualifying as a pediatrician.
Did you notice the mommy’s face – overwhelmed by emotion? At the end of your career as a doctor you will have memory banks filled with numerous of these moments!
Isn’t that a great reason for becoming a pediatrician?
Here’s a picture of the baby in the video clip, three years later…
For Those Of You Who Own The Apprentice Doctor “How to Examine Patients” Foundation Course…
Start the program on the CDROM and look at the following lessons and project related to this topic:
– LIGHT: A BIOMEDICAL PERSPECTIVE
– PROJECT 5.2: INSPECT THE COLOR OF THE MUCOUS MEMBRANES
– PROJECT 39: EXAMINE THE ABDOMEN
– PROJECT 41: HEART SOUNDS: LISTENING TO AN UNBORN BABY’S HEARTBEAT
I hope you really enjoyed reading this month’s Letter from the Doc.
I’m sure you enjoyed it if you want to work with babies and children one day, but even if you are not yet sure what kind of doctor you want to become one day, this Letter from the Doc will have helped you get a better understanding of just one of the many options available to you.
Let me know what you think in the comments section below.
||Dr. Anton Scheepers, BChD, MDent, FFD(SA), MFOS, President of The Apprentice Corporation|