Physiological Perspective, the First Trimester of Pregnancy Essay

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physiological perspective, the first trimester of pregnancy is when the majority of fetal development occurs, and also when the full development of the placenta occurs. The first twelve weeks or so after conception see the transformation of a fertilized egg cell into a fetus that shares blood flow with the placenta through the umbilical arteries and vein. As a result, these twelve weeks are particularly crucial for the health and development of the fetus at its most vulnerable stage. Among numerous other physiological changes, the mother's nutritional intake needs (which include vitamins and minerals) increase substantially, so nutrition is crucial. The avoidance of alcohol is necessary to avoid birth defects caused by the substance: as Blackburn notes, "drinking alcohol at any stage of pregnancy can affect the brain and other areas of development" (Blackburn 2007, 221).

Zoey's preganancy undergoes what is termed induced labor, in which she is given a dose of Pitocin, a synthetic form of the naturally occurring hormone oxytocin.
Oxytocin has a number of functions in humans (including a sense of bonding during orgasm) but its functions in pregnancy are incredibly important. The normal release of oxytocin by the brain's pituitary gland is what triggers the contractions during labor, and it also seems to play a role in decreasing inflammation and promoting wound healing (suggesting its usefulness in repairing the damage done to the uterus and birth canal during parturition). Hence the introduction of synthetic oxytocin through an IV drip helps to efface and dilate Zoey's cervix and causes her contractions to speed up.

3. The membrane that breaks when Zoey's "water breaks" is the amniotic sac. The amnion forms around the embryo in the earliest stages, as it attaches to the placenta, then fills with amniotic fluid (forming the sac) for the period of fetal development.

Tissues from a fetus might be useful for replacing diseased and damaged cells particularly in cases where the….....

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