Water-breaking research: Woman gives birth to a scientific paper — and a baby –in an MRI
It’s the obvious next step in the distinguished line of scientific inquiry that had author Kayt Sukel orgasm in an MRI by herself and scanned a couple having sex in such a device: German researchers have reported on what happens when a woman gives birth in an MRI.
The scientists were standing on the shoulders of giants, they note in their report in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology:
Shakespeare et al and Vadeyar et al. were the first to assess fetal well-being during MRI examination. They had to remove ferromagnetic parts from the device to be able to use within the MR scanner.
No, not that Shakespeare. About those ferromagnetic parts: You don’t want Mom and baby to end up like this.
Here’s what the authors were trying to do:
Knowledge about the mechanism of labor is based on assumptions and radiographic studies performed decades ago. The goal of this study was to describe the relationship between the fetus and the pelvis as the fetus travels through the birth canal, using an open Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scanner.
The researchers at Berlin’s Charite Hospital had publicized their efforts earlier, in this December 2010 press release:
An interdisciplinary team of scientists and leading medics from Berlin’s Charité University Hospital has now successfully managed a world’s first: they performed the birth of a child in an open high-field MRI scanner from Philips. For the first time, it was possible to obtain unique images showing the inside of the mother’s body and showing the movement of the child in the birth canal until the head emerged. The birth proceeded without any complications and mother and child are both doing well.
Some people are weirded out by couples who record video of Mom giving birth. I look forward to reading a report on when MRI Junior is offered the chance to watch an MRI of himself coming into the world. After all, it could be worse: Mom could have given birth in a PATH train.