Monday, April 22, 2013

And I thought I would never need physics again - HA!

I am spending a week in the special care nursery on the baby side for my pediatrics rotation and today was day 1 :)

So what does the neonatologist I am working with decide to talk about today but everyone's favorite subject - thermoregulation. *insert me doing a huge gulp because physics and I generally do not play well together*

So we begin basically with the basic information about why we worry about preemies.  Larger surface area per body weight, not as much brown fat stored, no shiver mechanism etc.

Then he says we understand teh physiology we need to discuss the physics of why they do what they do.
*insert silent gulp from me*

So what are the four ways a preemie, or any baby for that matter will lose heat?

1. Radiant - we naturally lose and gain heat from  the environment, thus the warmers

2. Evaporation - babies are wet and our breath is moist so that is  why they dry them off quickly

3. Conductive - wet towels or blankets are cold and a baby would lose heat, that is why they change blankets

4.  Transduction - babies lose heat simply through the movements we do and air flow we create, we need to be extra careful with preemies to not move them too much and make them lose heat that way

Much to my surprise I actually remembered all of these - and just when I thought that I would never need physics again!!!

1 comment:

  1. Hello,

    I have stumbled upon your blog which interests me because I am a mom of 2 and am planning on applying to MD and DO school in about 3-4 years when the kids are older and I complete my prerequisites. My kids are currently only 10 months and 2 years, so I also am waiting for them to get a bit older and easier to take care of!! It is wonderful to see such success in you. Thanks for the inspiration!