Hurricane Irene Spawns Baby Boom In Some Hospitals - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Hurricane Irene Spawns Baby Boom In Some Hospitals

MSNBC.COM - Hurricane Irene's sweep up the East Coast spawned a swath of damage from powerful winds and rains, but also a legacy of a happier sort — a crew of new babies born in the heart of a howling storm.

Some hospitals dotting the Eastern seaboard reported sharp upticks in hurricane births over the wild weekend, giving new life to an old rumor about a drop in barometric pressure sending women into labor.

At Sentara Obici Hospital in Suffolk, Va., 15 babies were born between Friday night and Sunday morning, topping the usual three or four in a typical day, said Sharon Hoggard, spokeswoman for Sentara Health System.

"The winds blew him in, I guess," said new father Joseph Bulls, 35, of Suffolk. Braylon Michael Bulls was born at about 5:40 p.m. Saturday after a harrowing ride to the hospital through wind and rain and flying branches as mom Elizabeth Barry, 18, sped through her first labor.

"You can't stop the baby coming," he added.

At New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Wilmington, N.C., 17 babies were born during an 18-hour stretch Friday and Saturday when the hospital was on lockdown because of the storm, said Carolyn Fisher, the hospital's spokeswoman. Usually the hospital might see 10 or 11 babies on a typical day.

It was so busy that Andi Curtis, 35, of Carolina Beach, N.C., had to deliver her new daughter just before midnight Friday without the epidural she wanted because doctors were so busy with other moms. By the time they got ready to prep her, Parker Elizabeth Curtis was on the way.

"The whole week we had been wondering about the hurricane and about whether the baby would come, two things completely out of your control," said Curtis. >>>CLICK HERE TO READ MORE

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