It is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics that babies be breastfed exclusively until about 6 months. At 6 months, a baby’s needs, particularly for certain micronutrients, exceed what can be provided by breast milk alone.
Many parents would like their children to develop taste preferences for a wide variety of foods, particularly healthy foods like vegetables. Food taste and flavor play a large role in food choices and preferences, and both biological and environmental factors influence taste preference in infants.
Many of our staff are now back in the office and receiving calls again, but our chat service is still available. We will operate from 8 AM to 5 PM CST Monday through Friday. If you need to discuss drug use while breastfeeding or during pregnancy please use the button below or call us at 1 (806) 352-2519.
Neonatal hypoglycemia (low blood sugar in a new baby) is a common problem in hospital nurseries. Some infants can have low blood sugar and show no symptoms, others become jittery and may feed poorly, and in severe cases, the infant may suffer brain damage or have developmental delay. Hospitals routinely screen babies that are at risk for hypoglycemia by testing for glucose levels in blood obtained from a heel stick. While a symptomatic baby with low glucose clearly needs treatment, there is some debate about what glucose level needs intervention if the baby appears well.
A recent study explored the relationship between maternal colonization (bacteria on the mother’s skin surface) with Methicillin Sensitive Staphylococcus Aureus (MSSA), during pregnancy and delivery to determine the association with infant colonization. Staphylococcus aureus is one of the most common causes of community and hospital acquired sepsis (a serious bacterial infection in the blood). Therefore, recognizing a patient’s colonization with MSSA and the antibiotic resistant form of this bacteria, Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) is important, especially in vulnerable populations such as those babies admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).
Asthma is a common chronic airway disorder characterized by periods of reversible airflow obstruction known as asthma attacks. One in 12 people (about 25 million, or 8% of the U.S. population) had asthma in 2009. It is estimated that the number of people with asthma will grow by more than 100 million by 2025.1 In 2008, asthma hospitalizations were 1.5 times higher among female than male patients.
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women. In 1990, the incidence of breast cancer was 5–7 per 100 women in developed countries in patients less than 70 years of age, and 1–2 per 100 in Asian and African countries. Several studies have suggested that breastfeeding may reduce the risk of several types of breast cancers.
Asthma is a common chronic inflammatory disease of the airways characterized by recurring symptoms of reversible airflow obstruction and bronchospasm. Symptoms include wheezing, coughing, chest tightness and shortness of breath. A recent study in New Zealand has suggested that breastfeeding may indeed protect against the risk of asthma in children up to 6 years of age.
Schizophrenia is a psychotic disorder, which causes severely impaired thinking, emotions, and unusual behaviors. Schizophrenic patients are typically unable to recognize sensory stimuli and may have enhanced perceptions of sounds, colors, and other features of their environment. Most schizophrenics, if untreated, gradually withdraw from interactions with other people, and lose their ability to take care of personal needs and grooming. A recent, but small study suggests that breastfeeding in infancy may delay the age of onset of schizophrenia.
Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease that affects the brain and spinal cord. Episodes can last for days, weeks or months and alternate with periods of reduced or no symptoms at all. Because nerves in any part of the brain or spinal cord may be damaged, patients with multiple sclerosis can have symptoms in many parts of the body such as: loss of balance, painful muscle spasms, numbness, abnormal sensation, tremors, problem in walking and coordination, double vision, vision loss, hearing loss, decreased attention span, poor judgment and memory loss. A new study from Germany suggests that breastfeeding may reduce the risk of multiple sclerosis.
A recent study has suggested that use of probiotics in pregnancy and breastfeeding may reduce the risk of eczema in infants. Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis, is the term broadly applied to a range of persistent skin conditions which include dryness and recurring skin rashes characterized by: redness, skin edema (swelling), itching, crusting, flaking, blistering, cracking, oozing, bleeding and areas of temporary skin discoloration.
Thomas Hale, Ph.D., R.Ph., is a professor of pediatrics and associate dean of research at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center and acting executive director of the InfantRisk Center. Hale is considered one of the foremost expert in the field of perinatal pharmacology and the use of medications by pregnant and breastfeeding mothers.
The vision of the InfantRisk Center is to create a new body of drug information concerning the safety of medications and their use during pregnancy and lactation. Additionally, the center will expand, enhance and disseminate knowledge regarding the use of medications and other environmental chemicals by pregnant and breastfeeding women worldwide.
Dr. Teresa Baker
Teresa Baker, MD. graduated from the University of Texas Southwestern and completed her residency training at Parkland Health and Hospital System in Dallas, TX. She is Board Certified by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology and is a Fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
Dr. Baker has a combined private and academic OB/GYN practice with the University Physicians at Texas Tech Health Sciences Center in Amarillo. She is interested in teen pregnancy, postpartum depression, and promoting preventive medicine for the women of the Texas Panhandle, as well as Resident and Student education and serves as the Residency Director.
Dr. Christine D. Garner, PhD, RD
Christine D. Garner, PhD, RD, completed her doctorate Nutrition at Cornell University, where she was an NIH Doctoral Trainee in Maternal and Child Nutrition. She was trained as a Registered Dietitian at the University of California San Francisco, where she also worked for several years as a Pediatric Clinical Dietitian.
Garner’s interests involve maternal and child health from a nutritional perspective. The majority of her research has centered on maternal obesity and breastfeeding, and she has used a combination of statistical and qualitative methods to investigate research questions pertaining to these topics.
Dr. Palika Datta, PhD
Palika Datta Ph.D. is a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Texas Tech University School of Medicine. She completed her Ph.D. in All India Institute of Medical Sciences. Dr. Datta did postdoctoral work at TTUHSC School of Pharmacy before joining the InfantRisk Center 4 years ago. She has broad experience in conventional biochemistry and molecular biology techniques. Liquid chromatography mass spectrometry, Microarray, Protein expression, purification in mammalian and bacterial cell culture system. Dr. Datta runs and supervises our highly sophisticated clinical pharmacology laboratories.
Kaytlin Krutsch, PharmD, MBA
Kaytlin Krutsch, PharmD, MBA is a board-certified Pharmacotherapy Specialist with a background in nutrition, clinical pharmacy, managed healthcare, and entrepreneurship. She is an assistant professor Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine.
Dr. Krutsch is pursuing a PhD in translating knowledge to action at The George Washington University. She is passionate about improving the decision-making process when a mom’s need for medication is complicated by breastfeeding and the risks involved with exposing an infant to the drug. This starts with studying which medications transfer into milk and ends with moms making informed decisions.
Kathleen A Rewers-Felkins
Kathleen A Rewers-Felkins is a Research Associate in the Department of Pediatrics at Texas Tech University School of Medicine. She received her Bachelors of Science from Loyola University Chicago and completed her Masters of Science at University of Houston. She has worked for Harrington Cancer Center, including a clinical trial as well as in several TT research labs, involved with cell culture, bacterial culture, PCR assays, animal work and liquid chromatography/mass spectrophotometry.
Dr. Amanda Griffin, MD
Amanda Griffin MD graduated from University of Nebraska Medical Center and completed her residency training in Pediatrics from Texas Tech University School of Medicine. Her practice includes direct patient care as well as supervision and education of residents and students in the outpatient clinic, newborn nursery, and inpatient ward. She also serves the same roles in a clinic for children with special healthcare needs.
Dr. Griffin also helped establish and presently supervised a breastfeeding clinic in the Department of Pediatrics. She supervises a Board Certified Lactation Consultant and helped expand the access of our patients to lactation services in our community. She is a Pediatric hospitalist and admits and cares for inpatients of private pediatricians in Amarillo.
Dr. Mubariiz Naqvi, MD
Dr. Mubariz Naqvi, MD is a long-time member of the Department of Pediatrics. He is Professor of Pediatrics and is a board certified neonatologist. Dr. Naqvi has spent many years supporting the use of human milk in his premature infants. He is a member of the Critical Care Committee, Neonatal Transport Committee, Pediatric Residency Committee, Chair of Education Research Sub-committee, and numerous other hospital and educational committees. Dr. Naqvi is Board Certified by American Academy of Pediatrics with a subspecialty Board of in Subspecialty Board of Neonatal/Perinatal Medicine.
Dr. Rachel Anderson, MD
Rachel Anderson MD is an assistant professor of pediatrics. She graduated from Texas Tech University School of Medicine in 2013 and completed her Pediatric residency at TTUHSC Amarillo in 2016. She has interests in Foster Care, breastfeeding, child abuse and neglect, and other disorders in pediatrics.
Dr. Todd Bell
Todd Bell, MD. is an Associate Professor in the Department of Pediatrics although he is double boarded in Pediatrics and Internal Medicine. He received his MD from the University of Arkansas School of Medicine cum laude in 2001. He completed a combined general internal medicine and general pediatrics residency in Durham, North Carolina at Duke University Medical Center. Dr. Bell has extensive research experience, particularly in influenza, infectious diseases, and dysautonomia.
Sandra Lovato, RN
Sandra Lovato, RN is a Registered Nurse and telephone advisor for the InfantRisk Center. She received her ADN from the Amarillo College of School of Nursing in May of 2008. She began working at the InfantRisk Center in November of 2013 as a Senior Adviser for Dr. Hale. Since she began working under Dr. Hale, she has learned a lot about the effects of medications and their passage into breastmilk. She is glad to be a part of such a valuable and important resource for pregnant and breastfeeding mothers and seeks to help mothers have a long, healthy breastfeeding relationship with their child.
Alicia Gill, RN
Alicia Gill, RN is a Registered Nurse and telephone advisor for the Infant Risk Center. She graduated the Vocational Nursing Program from Clarendon College in 2007. Then she received her ADN from Amarillo College in 2010. She began working at the Infant Risk Center in June of 2019 as a Senior Advisor for Dr. Hale. She has learned a lot about the effects of medications and their passage into breastmilk. She is excited to be a part of an important and valuable research center for pregnant and breast feeding moms.