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Even Fetuses Yawn, a New Study Shows.

ySTANBUL (CyHAN)- A recent study published in the journal Plos One on Wednesday suggests that fetal yawning is not simply a mouth opening. It also gives some information about the development of the fetus in the womb.

The study revealed that "the gaping mouth movement" which is examined on 15 healthy fetuses is actually "yawning", according to the Plos One journal from the University of Durham in the United Kingdom. Scientists have captured the images of the fetus in motion by 4D ultrasound.

It has been a well-known fact that an unborn child is hiccuping, swallowing, and stretching. However, yawning has never been determined this clear. Moreover, yawning has an important role to assess whether a growing fetus normally develops.

Study co-author Nadja Reissland, a psychologist at Durham University, said that they still do not know what importance and function the yawning of a fetus carries. Adding according to the findings, yawning can be related to the development of the fetus and baby's health symptoms. The frequency of fetal yawning may be linked to brain development early in gestation, Reissland stated.

7 female and 8 male fetuses, from 24 weeks to 36 weeks, have been examined during their development in mother's womb. The yawning started to decline since the 28th week. The researchers also discovered that there is no big difference between yawning features of male and female fetuses.


4D ultrasound

Face of a baby

A pregnant woman lying down

A doctor using the ultrasound

A baby face seen on the screen



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Publication:Cihan News Agency (CNA)
Date:Nov 22, 2012
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