Review Category : Health

Preemie Twins Finally Go Home for First Holiday as Family

Heidi Morrison(NEW YORK) — Now home with newborn twin girls and her toddler, Heidi Morrison remembers a time when she was thrilled to see baby poop.

That’s because one of the twins, Josie, developed a deadly infection after she was born, causing scar tissue to develop in her bowel, completely blocking it. After spending three more weeks in the hospital than her twin sister did, the two are finally home and ready to celebrate their first holiday on Easter Sunday.

“Every day we’d go in say ‘Has she pooped?’ Now, we’re wading in it,” Morrison laughed. “We’re so happy to just have her home.”

Morrison said she thought she was having a baby girl until she was 19 weeks pregnant, when she learned she was having two of them. Josie and her identical twin sister Claire, now eight weeks old, were born at 32 weeks.

Although they were small, they seemed to be doing well until about five days after they were born, when Josie stopped being able to eat and poop, Morrison said.

The infant had developed necrotizing enterocolitis, an infection that is common among babies born prematurely, said Dr. Tamar Mirensky, chief of pediatric surgical services at Mount Sinai Roosevelt Hospital in New York City. Its cause is unknown, but Mirensky said it’s thought to have to do with poor blood supply to the intestine.

As a result, Josie developed an intestinal obstruction called a stricture, which kept food from passing through, she said. Mirensky had to operate, removing the blockage and sewing the healthy intestine back together, she said.

Two days later, Josie pooped, and a few weeks later was able to go home, where her sister was waiting. Now, they’ve been home with their big brother Dylan, 2 and a half, for three weeks.

“Easter is the first time all of us will come together,” Morrison said. “One set of grandparents will be seeing them for the first time.”

The sisters will wear dresses and matching headbands for the occasion, Morrison said. And they’ve already developed their own unique personalities.

“Josie definitely is the fiercer one so that’s interesting to us,” she said. “She knows what she wants definitely in regards [sic] to food. She wakes up and wants a bottle pretty much right away. She won’t wait around for it. Claire is a little bit more on the mellower side.”

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Mom Uses FaceTime for Virtual Babysitting

iStock/Thinkstock(MINNEAPOLIS) — Keeping track of young children isn’t easy, and some people are turning to FaceTime for a virtual helping hand.

Rafi Fletcher, 40, is using the video chat app to babysit her son, Ford, who’s nearly 2 years old.

Instead of putting Ford down in front of the TV while she cleans the house or tries to get work done, about twice a week, an out-of-state relative will keep an eye on him via FaceTime.

“FaceTime helps me pretty much get those little chunks of time that I need. It usually lasts about 20 to 30 minutes, sometimes as long as an hour,” the Minneapolis woman said, explaining that her son is usually in the same room with her and in her line of sight.

Ford watches his virtual minders’ expressions, she said.

“So there’s you know, eyes, mouth, teeth, they’re pulling at cheeks and he is mimicking them as they do that so that’s always fun watching him do that,” she said.

Not only is it beneficial for babysitting, but FaceTime sessions allow Ford to get to know his relatives who live far away, she said.

“He is growing up with them so it’s not like when we go there for holidays and he doesn’t know these people,” Fletcher, who’s trying to start a clothing line, said. “He knows them, now he hears the FaceTime sounds…he’s learning who his relatives are, getting familiar faces so he’s much more comfortable.”

Still, there have been close calls. “He was on the bed and then he was about to roll off and my sister was like ‘Hey! Hey! He’s rolling, he’s rolling!’ And so I quickly ran there and grabbed him before he rolled off the bed,” Fletcher said.

While many mothers call this a clever, creative solution, others are quick to criticize the practice as ridiculous.

Karen Stewart, a licensed clinical psychologist, says using FaceTime to help monitor a child is harmless — unless it goes too far.

“Do not leave the house. Grandma in Chicago cannot babysit your child in Los Angeles,” she said.

She added: “Your Face Time is not your babysitter. I think this is a great opportunity to interact with your family but it’s not a real babysitter. This a babysitter for where you are in the next room — literally 10 feet away.”

Fletcher says she’ll keep doing it as long as her son is happy. “If it was something where he didn’t enjoy it, he probably wouldn’t stay there that long, but you hear him laughing and smiling,” she said.

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Nurses Confess: Four Insider Secrets That Could Affect You

Creatas/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — With the power of life and death sometimes in their very hands, being a nurse can be a high pressure job.

Nurses Lauren, Christi and Ro pulled back the hospital curtain and let ABC News’ 20/20 in on the secrets of their profession.

“Everything you see on TV is completely wrong,” Lauren, an emergency room nurse, told 20/20. “The E.R. is brutal. We see from the most horrifically, critically ill patients to the patient in the room next-door who’s there for toe pain.”

From how they’ve seen difficult patients dealt with to how they deal with the pressure of the job, they offered some helpful hints to prospective patients on how to “survive” a hospital stay.

Get an inside look at the high-stress, high-stakes profession below.

1. It’s a stressful job, so kindness goes a long way.

“It’s a very emotionally, drastic job to have,” Lauren said. “Be nice to us, and we will go above and beyond the regular nursing care that you’re going to get.”

2. This might be the code word for a rude patient.

You’ve probably heard of hospital emergency codes like “code red” and “code blue,” but it turns out there might be another one you’re less familiar with.

“I’ve heard ‘PITA’ thrown around,” Ro said. “Pain in the A?”

3. They have ways to lighten the mood when an intoxicated patient comes in.

The nurses confess they’ll take bets on a drunk person’s alcohol level without using the blood test.

“It’s the smell. It’s if they try to spit at you…how accurate are they?” Lauren said.

“How close are they getting to you when they’re telling you they’re not drunk,” Ro said.

4. Nurses have been caught stealing patients’ medication.

“The painkiller abuse among nurses is really a silent epidemic,” author Alexandra Robbins said she learned when interviewing nurses for her book, The Nurses: A Year of Secrets, Drama, and Miracles with the Heroes of the Hospital.

The nurses say they are supposed to “waste” medication by discarding leftovers in front of another nurse. But keeping it instead is relatively easy, according to Lauren, who said she’s accidentally taken home medications.

“And by the time you think about it, you’re emptying your pockets at home,” Lauren said. “I always bring it back the next day. However, addiction is a common problem among hospital staff.”

Last January, Ryan Slater had an emergency appendectomy when he had his pain medication swapped with saline solution by a nurse at the hospital. The hospital said this was an isolated incident and that it was taking many steps to eliminate the risk of it happening again. They said the nurse was no longer employed at the hospital. Her nursing license is now revoked.

Ro even recalls catching a nurse red-handed diverting medication at one of the previous hospitals where she worked. “She was putting the waste in her soda can and going and medicating the patient,” Ro said.

“There are ways that nurses can get help without losing their license and without putting patients at risk,” Robbins said. “It’s really too quiet of an issue, and people need to talk about it more.”

“For the past 13 years, nurses have held the top spot as the public’s most honest and ethical profession in America in an annual gallop poll,” the American Nurses Association said in a statement to 20/20.

Tune in to ABC News’ 20/20 on Friday, April 3 at 10 p.m. ET.

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Pore-Fection! Seven Ways to Stay Wrinkle-Free, for Free

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Americans will try all sorts of ways to get their skin looking as wrinkle-free as possible. There are a plethora of fancy facials that use, among other unique ingredients, lasers, bee venom, and even one’s own blood. In addition to those treatments, there are pricey cosmetic creams, Botox and even face slapping.

But you don’t have to spend a lot of money to prevent wrinkles.

As part of the Good Morning America Yahoo Your Day series, GMA met up with Michele Promaulayko, Yahoo Health’s editor-in-chief, to get the scoop on how to prevent wrinkles for free.

She said that most wrinkles are caused by the breakdown of collagen and elastin, adding: “biggest culprits are obviously smoking and the sun.”

Promaulayko also offered the following seven easy tips to prevent wrinkles:

1. Avoid drinking through a straw. “When you’re pursing your lips a lot with a straw, you’re going to get those little lines around your lips. It’s not cute,” she said.

2. Limit frequent gum chewing. The repetitive motion of chewing, usually more on one side of the mouth, can cause wrinkles to be more pronounced on that side of the face.

3. Always wear your sunglasses, even when it’s cloudy. “You’re always squinting when you’re in bright light. And that’s going to cause fine lines around your eyes,” she noted.

4. Try not to stretch your skin when applying or removing makeup. Just try to be gentle with your skin,” she said. “Also we have a tendency to…raise our eyebrows and open our mouth and make all these funny faces. Try not to do that.”

5. Limit consumption of refined sugar. “It does nothing good. It breaks down your cells,” she said, adding that it causes inflammation.

6. Be aware of how much you’re looking down at your mobile devices. “You can use voice texting…holding your phone up and not looking down,” she said.

7. Try not to sleep on your side. “When you sleep on your side, you cause wrinkles on your face, but you also cause cleavage wrinkles,” she said. She advised that people sleep on their backs and use silky pillowcases.

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If You Can’t Quit TV at Least Quit Sitting

iStock/Thinkstock(PITTSBURGH) — Remember when the worst thing that could happen to you from watching too much TV is that your brain would turn to mush? Well, now it’s a lot more serious than that.

Andrea Kriska, an epidemiologist at the University of Pittsburgh, says that people put themselves at greater risk of contracting diabetes from chronic TV viewing.

How bad does it get? Kriska says the risk goes up by 3.4 percent for every hour you sit in front of the tube.

Of course, it’s not the appliance itself that’s the threat — it’s all that sitting, which can also apply to the computer or at work.

And here’s what makes it really scary: any amount of exercise you do won’t counteract the risk of diabetes as long as you spend hour after hour on your backside.

Studies seems to confirm these results but it’s not a hopeless cause if people are really serious of avoiding diabetes and all the health issues that go with it.

According to Kriska, “It is likely that a lifestyle intervention program that incorporates a specific goal of decreasing sitting time would result in greater changes in sitting and likely more health improvements than are demonstrated here.”

Your goals: exercise regularly, try to lose some weight and if you’re going to watch TV, try to do more of it standing up.

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Creative Thoughts Spring from Tired Minds

iStock/Thinkstock(ALBION, Mich.) — Ever been so tired, you felt like you couldn’t think straight?

Get that thought out of your head right now because it turns out that feeling a little sleepy and disoriented might result in some very creative and interesting ideas.

Robert Friedman, who wrote the book The Best Place to Work, says that fatigue puts people in less control of their thoughts, and as a result, this frees up the mind for creativity.

In a study conducted at Albion University in Michigan, 400 students were given insight-based and analytical problems to solve at various times of the day. The outcome was that the students were more successful at insight-based questions when they felt more tired.

As a result, Friedman suggests that when it comes to any kind of creative task, work on it either where you’re still feeling a bit groggy after waking up or perhaps late in the day when you’ve already put in a full day’s work.

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Sweat Never Smelled So Good

iStock/Thinkstock(BELFAST, Northern Ireland) — For the sake of staying fit, people will put up with a lot, including the often pungent odor of perspiration that wafts through the gym.

Since sweating is part of the routine and there’s really no way to stop it, Nimal Gunaratne and researchers at Queen’s University Belfast have developed an ionic liquid that can be sprayed on like a scent before a workout, turning perspiration into something that is pleasing to the senses.

Gunaratne explains that when the liquid comes in contact from the water from sweat, it produces a sweet-smelling fragrance. Even better, the compounds in perspiration that cause that sweaty stink are neutralized by the ionic liquid.

The next step in the process is already underway with a perfume development company working with Gunaratne and his team to produce one or two products that will be available commercially.

Until then, try not to let them see you sweat.

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Scientists Reveal Real ‘Paleo’ Diet of Ancient Skeleton

Brittney Tatchell/Smithsonian Institution(NEW YORK) — Researchers studying the bones of an ancient skeleton in Washington state have uncovered an interesting twist to the man’s original “paleo” diet.

Scientists have been examining the mysterious Kennewick skeleton since it was found near that city in 1996. The skeleton dates back 9,000 years and appears to be of a different ethnicity than other indigenous people, according to Henry Schwarcz, a geochemist and professor emeritus at the School of Geography and Earth Sciences at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada.

Schwarcz, who studies the diets of ancient people by analyzing isotopes in bones, said he was amazed after analyzing the collagen in the bones of Kennewick man in an effort to identify his “paleo” diet.

“This guy was apparently living on a diet almost exclusively of marine foods; foods that come from the ocean,” Schwarcz said.

The results are surprising because the man was found 350 miles inland along the Columbia River near plains that were teeming with terrestrial wildlife. While he could have been subsisting on salmon swimming upstream, he was likely not venturing to hunt in the fields.

“He was choosing not to eat that wildlife,” Schwarcz said.

The geochemist explained that the Kennewick man may have “had a prejudice against eating footed creatures. That’s not really something that we [see.]”

Kennewick said it’s unclear why he didn’t try to branch out and eat other wildlife in the area.

The time period for the Kennewick skeleton is just under the timeline cited by followers of the “paleo” diet, who aim to eat the same way people ate 10,000 to 2.5 million years before agriculture took hold.

Ken Sayers, an anthropologist at Georgia State University in Atlanta and one of the lead authors of the recent Quarterly Review of Biology of how ancient people ate, said there is little evidence to suggest early humans subsisted on a specialized diet.

“Whatever angle you chose to look at the diets of our early ancestors, it’s hard to pinpoint any one particular feeding strategy,” Sayers said.

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Scientists Reveal Real ‘Paleo’ Diet of Ancient Skeleton

Brittney Tatchell/Smithsonian Institution(NEW YORK) — Researchers studying the bones of an ancient skeleton in Washington state have uncovered an interesting twist to the man’s original “paleo” diet.

Scientists have been examining the mysterious Kennewick skeleton since it was found near that city in 1996. The skeleton dates back 9,000 years and appears to be of a different ethnicity than other indigenous people, according to Henry Schwarcz, a geochemist and professor emeritus at the School of Geography and Earth Sciences at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada.

Schwarcz, who studies the diets of ancient people by analyzing isotopes in bones, said he was amazed after analyzing the collagen in the bones of Kennewick man in an effort to identify his “paleo” diet.

“This guy was apparently living on a diet almost exclusively of marine foods; foods that come from the ocean,” Schwarcz said.

The results are surprising because the man was found 350 miles inland along the Columbia River near plains that were teeming with terrestrial wildlife. While he could have been subsisting on salmon swimming upstream, he was likely not venturing to hunt in the fields.

“He was choosing not to eat that wildlife,” Schwarcz said.

The geochemist explained that the Kennewick man may have “had a prejudice against eating footed creatures. That’s not really something that we [see.]”

Kennewick said it’s unclear why he didn’t try to branch out and eat other wildlife in the area.

The time period for the Kennewick skeleton is just under the timeline cited by followers of the “paleo” diet, who aim to eat the same way people ate 10,000 to 2.5 million years before agriculture took hold.

Ken Sayers, an anthropologist at Georgia State University in Atlanta and one of the lead authors of the recent Quarterly Review of Biology of how ancient people ate, said there is little evidence to suggest early humans subsisted on a specialized diet.

“Whatever angle you chose to look at the diets of our early ancestors, it’s hard to pinpoint any one particular feeding strategy,” Sayers said.

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Scientists Reveal Real ‘Paleo’ Diet of Ancient Skeleton

Brittney Tatchell/Smithsonian Institution(NEW YORK) — Researchers studying the bones of an ancient skeleton in Washington state have uncovered an interesting twist to the man’s original “paleo” diet.

Scientists have been examining the mysterious Kennewick skeleton since it was found near that city in 1996. The skeleton dates back 9,000 years and appears to be of a different ethnicity than other indigenous people, according to Henry Schwarcz, a geochemist and professor emeritus at the School of Geography and Earth Sciences at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada.

Schwarcz, who studies the diets of ancient people by analyzing isotopes in bones, said he was amazed after analyzing the collagen in the bones of Kennewick man in an effort to identify his “paleo” diet.

“This guy was apparently living on a diet almost exclusively of marine foods; foods that come from the ocean,” Schwarcz said.

The results are surprising because the man was found 350 miles inland along the Columbia River near plains that were teeming with terrestrial wildlife. While he could have been subsisting on salmon swimming upstream, he was likely not venturing to hunt in the fields.

“He was choosing not to eat that wildlife,” Schwarcz said.

The geochemist explained that the Kennewick man may have “had a prejudice against eating footed creatures. That’s not really something that we [see.]”

Kennewick said it’s unclear why he didn’t try to branch out and eat other wildlife in the area.

The time period for the Kennewick skeleton is just under the timeline cited by followers of the “paleo” diet, who aim to eat the same way people ate 10,000 to 2.5 million years before agriculture took hold.

Ken Sayers, an anthropologist at Georgia State University in Atlanta and one of the lead authors of the recent Quarterly Review of Biology of how ancient people ate, said there is little evidence to suggest early humans subsisted on a specialized diet.

“Whatever angle you chose to look at the diets of our early ancestors, it’s hard to pinpoint any one particular feeding strategy,” Sayers said.

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