I watched the birth of a baby boy in Houston, Texas this morning. I never left my desk in New York City, but myself and some 14,000 other Twitter followers watched a baby boy come into the world all thanks to Twitter and the pioneering efforts of Houston Memorial Hermann Hospital. And baby even got his own hashtag!
The 39-year-old mother, who chose to remain anonymous, agreed to the live-tweeted c-section — precluded only by the first ever live-tweeted open-heart surgery and live-tweeted brain operation.
The surgery reportedly began at 7:30 CST via @houstonhospital. Between live updates on incisions, accompanied by video and pictures, the feed was punctuated with various warnings. You know, just so you didn’t think you were going to be treated to edited pics of clean and smiling newborns:
Make no mistake. Followers were treated to every little fascinating detail, along with some fun c-section facts:
But nothing compared to the winning tweet of the morning. Standby! Standby for a newborn!
And gems like this:
Obstetrician Anne Gonzalez reportedly performed the procedure, which by this point, is all over Pinterest, YouTube, Facebook, and Storify. Dr. Amelia Chu wore a GoPro head camera so viewers could see a live-streaming feed from a doctor’s POV. Obstetrician and gynecologist Sherri Levin answered questions from followers on Twitter during the procedure.
Dr. Gonzalez says that live-tweeting such a common surgery lets mommies and birth-inclined women get a whiff of what they’re in for:
“[A live-tweeted c-section] will allow us to pull back the curtain on the most common surgery that many women need to have in order to deliver their baby. It also will help families to prepare for their own deliveries and show them what to expect,” she said. “It is an amazing honor to be involved in the most important event in this family’s life and we are thankful they are sharing their story with the public.”