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Online Discussion: Tracking new emerging diseases and the next pandemic

First year struggle for babies

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EdwinSm, View Drop Down
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    Posted: June 21 2016 at 9:50pm
Warming:  the full article contains some very saddening reading

Originally posted by BBC BBC wrote:


And like many of them, she has been having respiratory problems related to the malformation in her brain.

In some cases, those problems have resulted in death.


"They [the babies with microcephaly] have a hard time swallowing. When the baby was being breastfed, she took the milk into her lungs", she says.

Specialists who have been following the progress of the babies expected this would happen.

"When you're born, suckling, breathing and swallowing are reflexes. Our brain manages to organise this so we don't breathe and swallow at the same time. But this doesn't happen in the most severe cases of microcephaly," says neurologist Vanessa van der Linden.

"They might be able to suckle properly when they are born, but as they get older, they lose their reflexes and the brain has trouble organising these functions properly. "

Early studies show that about 70% of the Zika-related microcephaly cases in Brazil are severe.
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