|Babies smiling and crying before birth|
|http://www.sina.com.cn 2004/05/18 13:40 英语文摘|
Images published for the first time seem to suggest that unborn babies can smile, blink and cry weeks before they leave the womb. The pictures of foetuses1 about 26 weeks after conception have been captured by fourdimension scanning equipment now being employed at some clinics and teaching hospitals.
Experts can now debate whether this apparent grin reflects an emotional response or is a simple physical reaction, helping prepare baby for the outside world.
The smile might appear at 26 weeks development, but the new techniques clearly show limb movements at eight weeks, the foetus leaping, turning and “jumping” at 1112 weeks, intricate movement of fingers at 15 weeks and yawning at 20 weeks. Obstetrician2 Stuart Campbell, who has been using the Austriandeveloped equipment at the private Create Health Clinic, London, for two years, said: “It is remarkable that a newborn baby does not smile for about six weeks after birth. But before birth, most babies smile frequently. This may indicate the baby’s troublefree existence in the womb and the relatively traumatic3 first few weeks after birth when the baby is reacting to a strange environment.” Professor Campbell, who is also head of obstetrics and gynaecology4 at St George’s medical school, London, said: “With this new advance, there are many questions that can now be investigated. Do babies with genetic problems such as Down’s syndrome have the same pattern of activity as normal babies? Does the foetus smile because it is happy or cry because it has been disturbed by some event in the womb? Why does a baby blink when we assume it is dark inside the uterus?” The ￡120,000 scanner that makes this possible costs twothree times more than conventional equipment. Prof Campbell thinks he was the first to use it in Britain. The machine develops ultrasound so that it can be transformed and shaded to produce detailed surface features from the foetus which move in real time. -
(周陈 摘译自 www.guardian.co.uk Sep. 13, 2003)
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