SINCE 2009, a third of all births
in the U.S. have been by cesarean section—the delivery of a
baby through a surgical incision in the mother’s abdomen
and uterus. The percentage of
cesarean births has been rising
steadily for more than a
decade; they are up nearly 60
percent since 1996, despite evidence of the increased risk of
maternal and neonatal mortality when healthy women agree
to a scheduled surgery.
This awareness month was
initiated by the International
Cesarean Awareness Network
(ICAN), a nonprofit organization founded in 1982 primarily
to improve mother-child health
by preventing unnecessary
cesareans through education
about risk and appropriate
ELENA ROSE PHOTOGRAPH Y
Costco member Dr. Phyllis
ritchie.com) is a board-certi;ed infectious
disease specialist. She
writes a medical column
for The Oregonian and
What are probiotics and what do they do?
—Vince, Portland, OR
WE ALL HAVE bacteria that occur naturally in our
gut. Certain factors (such as taking antibiotics)
can cause an overgrowth of “bad” bacteria
overtaking “good” bacteria in the gut, resulting
in ;atulence and/or severe diarrhea.
Probiotics are concentrated supplements of
bene;cial bacteria similar to those that occur
naturally in the digestive tract. They can be
purchased in liquid, powder or pill form. They are
sold in almost any pharmacy and can even be
found in some yogurt.
Although more research is needed, there is
encouraging evidence that probiotics may:
• Help treat antibiotic-associated diarrhea
• Prevent and treat vaginal yeast infections
• Help treat irritable bowel syndrome
• Prevent and treat eczema in children
Side effects from probiotics are rare, and it
would be dif;cult to overdose on them as long as
you follow the directions on the bottle.
DOXYCYCLINE falls in the class of tetracycline
antibiotics. There has been more than 50 years
of experience with these medications. Tetracyclines are used for a broad range of infections,
Tetracyclines may indeed cause permanent
discoloration and/or dis;guration of teeth in
children under the age of 10. Pregnant and
breastfeeding women should not take tetracyclines because they can be passed to the fetus
or baby and cause tooth discoloration.
Minocycline (another type of tetracycline) may
occasionally result in prolonged grayish discoloration of adult teeth in about 5 percent of people.
If you are not pregnant, planning to become
pregnant, breastfeeding or under the age of 10,
doxycycline will not stain your teeth yellow. C
Cesarean facts from ICAN
COSTCO MEMBERS Scott and Ann Leslie’s
son, Gage, was diagnosed with autism at the
age of 2½ in 2005. “Gage and our struggles
with learning how to communicate with him
were our inspiration to do something that
would help children with autism learn important social skills—skills which they otherwise
have quite a bit of difficulty learning,” says Ann.
They saw that Gage responded positively
to children’s videos and decided to develop an
educational tool to help him learn and
improve his behavioral and communication
skills. The couple met with speech therapists
and board-certified neurologic music therapists with the idea of making a kids’ video for
children on the autism spectrum.
Using Scott’s experience in video produc-
tion, they created and produced Kibbles
Rockin’ Clubhouse ( www.noteabilities.com).
“Kibbles Rockin’ Clubhouse endeavors to fos-
ter independence in children affected with
autism through engaging, fun and interactive
videos,” says Ann, who is also chairperson of
the 2012 San Diego Ride for Autism, an
annual motorcycle ride benefiting children
with autism and their families. “The DVD/
CD set helps children with autism express
their feelings and teaches them the social
skills needed in various social situations.”
Skills are taught using speech and music
therapy, peer modeling and fun songs. The
DVD also has teaching tools for parents.
(Left to right) Ann, Gage, Avery
and Scott Leslie.
keep helping children with autism, parents of
autistic children and, of course, Gage.
“Our motto is ‘Engage Gage,’ and bring
him into our world,” says Scott. C