Mary Anne Ryan
Mount Mercy College, secondary school, UCC, RCSI
RGN/RSCN/RM, BSc Nursing, MComm ( PA), MSc ethics and law, PhD final yeas
Cork , Dublin, Australia - nursing teaching and research
Clinical research , PhD candidate ( sleep and neurodevelopment of the preterm newborn)
Irish Centre for Fetal and Neonatal Translational Research ( INFANT Centre, UCC)
Favourite thing to do in science: Record baby's brain wave activity when asleep..
About Me: I am a wife, mother, specialist nurse and researcher.
I am a Corker…who is back here now having lived in Australia for 7 years. I consider myself young but my daughter thinks I am ancient..( note; anyone over 21 is ancient…just saying!). I have a house, a husband, two daughters, 2 dogs and 2 cats (one of whom had kittens last week). I love babies, prosecco, chocolate, laughing, walking in Kerry in rain or shine.Did a lot of travelling and planning to do much more 🙂
My Work: I am a baby nurse who also research babies brain. Some babies are often born early and need to be in hospital for many days or weeks. I am a specialist nurse who looks after these tiny babies until they are ready for home.
When babies are born preterm they are very small and may need some help to breathe and grow. We care for them in a special place called the NICU ( neonatal intensive care unit).It is a special place in a hospital where these tiny babies grow until ready for discharge home. It is hard to describe the NICU. It is very ‘hi-tech’ and often the baby can barely be seen there is so much machinery and wires around them. The road home maybe long for the smallest of baby’s and indeed can be challenging at times as not every baby gets to graduate from the NICU and go home.
I am also a research nurse who works with other researchers to improve outcomes for babies and mothers. My own research is looking at the preterm infant’s brain and how important sleep is in ensuring normal developpment of the infant.
Click on the link below to get an idea of what I do…Tru stories in the NICU
My Typical Day: I If I am in the newborn baby ward I will be given 4 - 5 newborn babies to look after for the day. Some babies may be very small and in incubators. This is to make sure they are kept warm and we can see them always. I feed them and teach new mums and dads how to take care of them. Some babies who are sick need medicine or treatment to give them the best chance of getting better. I also study babies brains and how they grow when sleeping
Whether I am nursing or researching generally in work ready to start my day at 7.30 am each morning. If nursing I am generally allocated 4-5 babies to care for the next 12 hrs. Some babies may need some help breathing, others may have drips and unable to get any milk. Other babies are too small to feed and have a tube going up their nose and down into their stomach, through which we give them their milk. As they grow they will learn to feed from the bottle or breastfeed and we will take the tube out. Some babies are under bright lights as they may be jaundiced ( skin yellowish)
I will make sure all babies get fed at the right time, get their medicines and treatments and monitor all their temperature and heart rate. Unlike you and I, babies get very sick very fast so we are extra careful to constantly monitor them.
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Active, motivated, happy
Who is your favourite singer or band?
Nobody in. particular, more about the songs than singer
What's your favourite food?
Sushi and Thai food
What is the most fun thing you've done?
Paragliding in Malaysia, white water rafting in Australia,
What did you want to be after you left school?
Were you ever in trouble at school?
..who wasn't, but nothing serious!
What was your favourite subject at school?
What's the best thing you've done as a scientist?
Monitor baby brain activity and interpret these tiny signals as the infant sleeps
What or who inspired you to become a scientist?
Nobody in particular , but just always wanted to do some research and discover something new!
If you weren't a scientist, what would you be?
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
Run a marathon, sleep lots more, take a year out and travel a it more.
Tell us a joke.
How would you know there was an elephant in the fridge???? You'd see his footprints in the butter.