Parturition Article Analysis

1294 Words null Page
In this article, the timing of parturition is discussed in the human primate and a new theory is proposed on why human neonates are born so helpless while neonates of other primates are much more prepared for the world. The article presents the old idea coined the ’obstetrical dilemma’, which supports the idea that humans are born before their brains reach optimal development because if the neonatal head got any larger, it would not be able to fit down the narrow human birth canal. Human birth canals are so narrow in order to support narrow hips that allow efficient upright movement. The new hypothesis presented by the article is that humans give birth when the mother’s metabolic resources are over stressed by the fetus’ metabolic needs and …show more content…
The fetus initiates parturition by secreting cortisol from its adrenal cortex. Cortisol acts on the placenta to stop the release of placental progesterone. The placenta will also begin to secrete estrogen, which will trigger uterine contractions to begin. Prostaglandin will also be produced which will act on and cause luteolysis of the corpus luteum. This stops the production of progesterone from the corpus luteum. While this is happening, the fetus is putting pressure on the cervix which sends positive feedback to the hypothalamus and posterior pituitary to secrete more oxytocin which causes uterine contractions. Estrogen is also signaling the cervix to produce more mucus which helps lubricate the birth canal. Relaxin signals the cervix and pelvic ligaments to dilate. The hormones continue to feedback and work on the female’s body until the fetus is …show more content…
This journal has also been around for 101 years and is a high quality journal in the eyes of the scientific community. The paper begins with an explanation of the old hypothesis, the obstetrical dilemma, and presents the new hypothesis, energetics of gestation and growth. The new hypothesis is made possible by new data that was unavailable when the obstetrical dilemma was introduced. The paper claims that this new hypothesis is necessary because of the new data that supports the hypothesis in addition to disproving the old hypothesis. The energetics of gestation and growth hypothesis is a logical hypothesis with the current data and is supported amply in the

Related Documents