Fragile Beginnings

Fragile Beginnings book coverA gripping medical narrative that brings readers into the complex world of newborn intensive care, where brilliant but imperfect doctors do all they can to coax life into their tiny, injured patients

Half a million babies are born prematurely in the United States every year. As doctors and parents make decisions about life-saving care in the first hours of a premature infants life, they must grapple with profound ethical and scientific questions: Who should be saved? How aggressively should doctors try to salvage the life of a premature baby, who may be severely neurologically and physically impaired? What will that child’s quality of life be like after millions of dollars are spent saving her? As a specialist in high-risk obstetrics, Dr. Adam Wolfberg explores those profound questions at the beginning of life from the font lines of the Newborn Intensive Care Unit.

Wolfberg is also the father of a premature child, and he describes his daughter Larissa’s precipitous birth that left her tenuously hanging on to life. Throughout the book he examines the limitations of newborn intensive-care medicine as well as the fascinating field of neuroplasticity, which looks at how the brain adapts to injury or change. Wolfberg takes us into the lab, where researchers are hoping to improve the future for children born too soon.

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