RSS
The first-ever live-tweeted c-section birth
"Standby...for baby #MHBaby"
Memorial Hermann's Dr. Chu is outfitted with a GoPro head camera to provide a surgeon's point-of-view.
Memorial Hermann's Dr. Chu is outfitted with a GoPro head camera to provide a surgeon's point-of-view. Twitter/HoustonHospital
M

ore than 11,000 babies are born in the United States every day. But so far, only one birth has been live-tweeted by doctors. Thanks to the social-media-savvy staff at the Memorial Hermann Hospital in Houston — who have already live-tweeted an open-heart surgery and a brain surgery — the Twittersphere was welcomed on Feb. 20 to a graphic behind-the-scenes look at a c-section birth. Under the username @houstonhospital and using the hashtag #MHbaby, a medical team tweeted the play-by-play, including photos and videos of the prep, surgery, and delivery. The doctors also responded to questions posed on the thread. The increasingly frenetic result is a riveting moment-by-moment account of a standard surgical procedure rendered as dramatic as a Hollywood action film, blood and gore included.

At the center of this social media experiment is an anonymous 39-year-old woman, who is in the 39th week of her third trimester, and her husband. Readers of the feed are taken from a quiet photo in the woman's hospital room to a graphic video of a surgeon making the first incision all the way to the baby's first breath. The Twitter team kindly made sure to include regular tweets reminding followers that the contents of the birth surgery "may be GRAPHIC IN NATURE." Indeed, the resulting videos, especially, are not for the faint of heart or stomach. For a full, uncensored rundown check out @houstonhospital's feed. Here, a safe-for-work highlight reel of the fascinating medical event.

EDITORS' PICKS

THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER

Subscribe to the Week