Doctors say placenta could provide valuable information - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

7/5/09

Doctors say placenta could provide valuable information

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By Cassie Hataway | email

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Doctors are finding that placenta, or afterbirth, can provide a huge source of information about the mother and her new baby in the future, especially if there were any complications during the delivery. That's why researchers at Cornell Medical Center in New York are studying about 1,500 placentas every year. 

Apparently, the placenta contains arteries and veins from both the mother and the baby and researchers are finding that the placenta can reveal changes and abnormalities that can point to underlying diseases like lupus, diabetes, and blood clotting disorders. 

"It's important that they know that they have this and sometimes the first indication that they have this underlying disorder is an abnormal placenta", says Dr. Rebecca Baergen of Cornell Medical Center. 

As for the baby, Dr. Baergen says that the placenta can provide a source of DNA, revealing potential genetic problems and growth issues as well as any inherited diseases that might have been passed on from the mother. 

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