Discovery Health's Baby Week

Jul 12, 2010 at 7:20 p.m. ET

Got baby fever? Discovery Health’s Baby Week from July 12th through July 16th may be just the ticket to fulfill your baby lust! This riveting series showcases the real-life drama of extraordinary pregnancies and babies being born under riveting circumstances. From the nail-biting moments in the top neonatal intensive care units in the series NICU to the unbelievable pregnancy of a woman with two uteri in Strange Pregnancies and the birth of 14 pound infants in Big Babies, you won’t want to miss one single night during Baby Week.

Newborn baby

Review: Big Babies

A big baby means a healthy baby, right? Not necessarily. The Discovery Baby Week special Big Babies (Premieres Tuesday, July 13th at 9 PM (ET/PT)) follows the pregnancy journey of 4 obese moms and the difficulties they face as they give birth to babies who are often larger than average. As the obesity epidemic continues, this show examines how being overweight and pregnant affects not only the mom (increased risk of gestational diabetes, increased risk of complications during labor and delivery, risk of hemorrhaging during delivery, increased risk of infection) but their baby as well, since big babies have a higher chance of injury during labor and increased risk of obesity later in life. Not only obese moms give birth to macrosomic babies. The show also features moms who are of normal weight who have big babies -- and obese moms who have small babies.

A big or macrosomic baby is defined as weighing over 9 pounds 14 ounces at birth. The largest baby delivered to date was Nadia from Siberia who weighed a whopping 17 pounds at birth! 34-year-old Karen, who weighs 322 and is preparing to give birth to her second child, knows what it’s like to give birth to a large baby. Her first son weighed 13 pounds, and doctors are concerned she will again have a big baby. We follow along as Karen must give herself daily shots to control her gestational diabetes (which obese moms have a higher risk of developing) and must walk with a cane due to the increased stress the pregnancy has put on her legs. As Karen undergoes a C-section, we watch as doctors struggle to cut through her abdomen during the procedure, as well as the emergency situation that develops as they have difficulty controlling her bleeding.

Gemma, who weighed 350 pounds before giving birth, did not know she was pregnant until she was well into her pregnancy. Concealed or surprise pregnancies are not uncommon for obese women, which puts the baby at risk because they are not receiving the early prenatal care they need. We follow along as Gemma has a difficult labor and must undergo an emergency C-section.

28-year-old Sara, who is also obese, gave birth to a 14-pound son named Joe. We follow along as she struggles with her now overweight toddler as she buys him clothes, takes him swimming (only with adults as she worries kids will pick on him) and worries that he will also be bullied for being heavy, as she was.

This show was a real eye-opener on how being heavy not only affects the mom during pregnancy, but can result in lasting effects to the children as well.

Baby Week Programming: July 12-July 16th

NICU:  Premiering Thursday, July 15h at 10 PM (ET/PT), this 10 episode drama follows families in the neonatal intensive care units after the birth of the premature babies. Episodes off NICU will run weekly throughout the summer on Thursdays at 10 PM (ET/PT)

Strange Pregnancies:  Premiering on Monday, July 12th at 9PM (ET/PT), this hour-long program showcases 3 amazing pregnancies, including a woman with two uteri, an ectopic pregnancy and a 56-year-old woman carrying triplets for her daughter.

A Baby to Save Our Son: Premiering on Monday, July 12th at 10 PM (ET/PT), this series raises the question if it is ethical to use one child’s life to save the life of another? If 3-year-old Charlie does not receive a bone marrow transplant, he could die before his 7th birthday.

Too Many Babies? The First 16 Months:  Premiering Wednesday, July 14th at 9 PM (ET/PT), this hour-long show follows the Jones family and their first year with their quintuplets.

Born On A Bad Day: Premiering Thursday, July 15th at 9 PM (ET/PT),   women share their stores of giving birth under amazing circumstances, including during a hostage situation in a maternity ward and by flashlight during a tornado.

The 10 Most Unbelievable Births: Premiering Friday, July 16th at 9 PM (ET/PT), real-life obstetricians from the series Deliver Me share stories of amazing and heartwarming births, including a woman who didn’t know she was pregnant until she gave birth, a transgendered couple who become pregnant and the birth of double identical twins.

Check out more about this amazing series at Discovery Health’s Baby Week.