Nurse Alice Breaks Down the Medicine: Bey and Jay-Z’s Twins Still Hospitalized

Beyonce and Jay-Z are new parents to twins


More than a week after reportedly being born on June 12th, Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s twins remain at UCLA Medical Center. They are still receiving care after reportedly being born before their due date.

We have yet to hear confirmation about how far along the babies were when they were born. Medically, we prefer babies be delivered as close to “full term” (37-40 weeks) as possible. This gives a baby more time to grow and develop. During pregnancy, a baby depends on its mother for important body functions. After birth, if a baby’s organs aren’t fully functioning, it’s common they are hospitalized for additional support.

Why the Twins Are Hospitalized


According to TMZ, the twins are being treated for a “minor condition” and are “under the lights,” which suggests that the babies are being treated for a common condition known as jaundice. Jaundice is a yellow tint to a newborn’s skin and the white part of their eyes. It is a sign that there’s too much bilirubin in their blood.

What Does That Really Mean?


It’s likely that because the twins were born prematurely their liver and body system functions may be having some difficulties. Bilirubin is a yellowish substance that’s made as the liver breaks down old red blood cells. It’s then eliminated from the body through urine and stool. When the body is unable to do so, bilirubin levels rise, leading to a condition known as “hyperbilirubinemia.” This causes jaundice. But it’s not just the skin discoloration that’s problematic. A high bilirubin level can be dangerous, leading to brain damage and other serious problems.

Isn’t Jaundice Normal in All Newborns?


In most cases, newborns have what’s called “physiologic jaundice.” It occurs because their organs aren’t yet able to get rid of excess bilirubin very well. This type of jaundice usually appears about 24 hours after birth. It gets worse until the third or fourth day, and then it goes away in about a week.

(Image: Flickr)


In the case of the Carter twins, their jaundice is likely more significant because they were born prematurely and are still being hospitalized well beyond the third or fourth day. This suggests they are requiring more extensive therapy. Based on typical treatment plans for newborns with jaundice, the twins are likely undergoing phototherapy and planned feedings. Phototherapy is a special light that the skin absorbs which changes the bilirubin so that the body can more easily get rid of it. Also, because premature babies typically aren’t eating or drinking very much, there are probably receiving planned feedings and intravenous (IV) fluids. These therapies provide necessary nutrition and also help them to pee and poop out the excess bilirubin.

Could It Be Something Else?


Although I hope it’s not the case here, other rare causes of jaundice in newborns include infection, a problem with the baby’s digestive system, or a problem with the mom’s and baby’s blood types. And the fact that the twins are premature puts them at risk for other medical conditions which can complicate their hospital stay. But it’s too early to tell; nor do we have confirmation of any other medical concerns. Like most Bey and Jay-Z fans—myself included—we are hoping for the best and look forward to their speedy recovery.


5 Ways to Help Keep Our Men Healthy

men healthy(Image: Courtesy of the American Heart Association)


Prevention is the best medicine. In fact, many of the health issues men face are preventable and treatable. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the top five leading causes of death among men are heart disease, cancer, unintentional injuries, chronic lower respiratory disease, and stroke. Heart disease is number one, killing one in every four males in the U.S.

Men can take charge of their personal health and wellness by getting important health screenings, eating healthier, being physically active, maintaining a healthy weight, managing stress, staying injury free, practicing safe sex, drinking in moderation, and being tobacco free. It may sound like a lot to do, but it’s totally doable, and it doesn’t have to be done in a silo.

Men’s health is everyone’s business. Whether it’s for yourself as a man, or you have a husband, son, uncle or brother. Keeping our men healthy is a team effort. So, where does one start? Here are five heart healthy suggestions to keep our men healthy.


1. Get Regular Health Checkups


Annual checkups could save your life. They are a proactive approach to staying well. It allows you and your doctor to identify what’s normal for you, which makes it easier to diagnose issues early on, before they become a problem. Sometimes, doctors can even catch things before any symptoms appear. Ask your doctor what screenings are needed and when. This is also a good time to track personal numbers such as blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, and body mass index. Maintaining and managing these at normal values are important to prevent things like heart disease and stroke. And get vaccinated. Immunizations help maintain health, regardless of age.

Ask your doctor what screenings are needed and when. This is also a good time to track personal numbers such as blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, and body mass index. Maintaining and managing these at normal values are important for preventing things like heart disease and stroke.

Also, get vaccinated. Immunizations help maintain health, regardless of age.


2. Get Good Sleep


Not getting enough sleep can be associated with a number of conditions, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and depression.

The amount of sleep one needs changes with age. According to the National Sleep Foundation, the average adult needs seven to nine hours of sleep. It’s also important that we don’t hinder getting good sleep with stimulants like coffee and energy drinks, alarm clocks, and external lights—including those from electronic devices. These things can interfere with our “circadian rhythm” or natural sleep/wake cycle.


3. Toss the Tobacco


Smoking is the leading cause of preventable death.  More than 16 million Americans are living with a disease caused by smoking. It’s never too late to quit, and quitting produces immediate and long-term benefits. It lowers the risk of heart disease, cancer, lung disease, erectile dysfunction, and other illnesses.

Additionally, it’s also important to avoid second-hand smoke, which is just as smoking dangerous as smoking yourself—if not more so. It can also cause heart disease, lung cancer, and stroke.


4. Be Active


According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, more than one-third of U.S. adults are obese. One way to control your weight is to be active. Staying active helps you to build stamina, stay fit and flexible, and burn calories as you move.

It’s recommended that adults get at least two-and-a-half hours of moderate-intensity aerobic activity each week and do muscle-strengthening activities at least two days a week. Remember to work all your major muscle groups, including your legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders, and arms.


5. Eat Healthier


I know this is sometimes easier said than done, so I won’t recommend you “remove” anything from your diet. Rather, I suggest that you “replace” certain things, substituting those processed, packaged, canned, and fatty foods with a variety of fresh fruit, vegetables, and lean meats.

Most perishable food is a great source of vitamins, minerals, and micronutrients, which protect against disease. If your food can live longer on the shelf than you can, then that’s a problem. Also, make snacks healthier with portion control, limiting the consumption of food and drinks that are high in calories, sugar, salt, fat, and alcohol.

To take a health assessment and find out how to get and stay healthy, visit


Want to Learn More and Keep the Conversation Going?


Join me, the American Heart Association, and BMe for a #MensHealthMonth Twitter chat Thursday, June 22, 2017, at 12 p.m. CST/1 p.m. EST. We’ll talk more about how men can stay healthy, relieve stress, eat healthier, and live longer lives.


Written by Nurse Alice