Shining Star: Tiffany Wyatt, APPAC

Tiffany Wyatt, APPAC As a full-time, freelance graphic designer of 15 years and natural-minded mom of two, Tiffany Clark Wyatt encapsulated for her second postpartum to help with energy levels and anxiety. After experiencing real results, she then encapsulated for a close friend’s second postpartum who suffered from severe PPD with her first. The results were life-changing for them both and Tiffany became a true believer in the benefits of placenta encapsulation. She is co-owner/co-manager of MotherBirth, an incredible group of birth service providers in southern Louisiana.
After four years and 300+ encapsulations, Tiffany continues to keep her knowledge base at the highest level available by maintaining her certifications with the Association of Placenta Preparations Arts (APPA), Louisiana Food Handlers, and Bloodborne Pathogen.

“The education and mentoring I received and continue to receive within the APPA community allow me to be competent and confident in my standards for safety, current practices, and in the complex art of preparations for my fellow mommas.”

Tiffany practices in Lafayette, LA and serves Lafayette to Lake Charles and everywhere in between.

Tiffany began encapsulating in 2013 as a mentor trained placenta specialist, then certified with APPA the summer of 2014. She has since been asked to be a co-owner and co-manager of MotherBirth. They have now tripled the size of their group and client base. MotherBirth is determined to provide the safest placenta preparation services by certifying each of their providers through APPA. Five of which are working through the course now.

Why did Tiffany choose to renew her certification with APPA?

“I choose to maintain my certification with APPA because of the level of accountability with a professionally-based, international board. Also, the knowledge and respect provided for the professional placenta service providers in the flexibility they are able to choose to practice with the safest standards in the industry.”

How has your affiliation and certification certified through APPA benefitted you and your practice?

“There have been a handful of occasions where I needed to consult other professionals on a particular case in order to confidently move forward in those situations. Certified APPACs were there to brainstorm the situation and I know I made the best choices for each of my clients with the support of my association.
APPA keeps us up-to-date with any studies or articles published allowing me to continue to be a sort of placenta knowledge resource for my birth community.” Way to step up to the plate as an expert in your field!

Tiffany’s advice to anyone considering becoming a Placenta Services Provider-

1. Strive to be an expert at what you chose to do by learning as much as you’re able and never stop.
2. Get to know the birth community in the area you wish to practice and create meaningful relationships.
3. Respect prospective clients and the industry by only practicing the safest protocols and proper equipment.

 

Tiffany serves Lafayette to Lake Charles, Louisiana and everywhere in between.

To Learn more about Tiffany and her practice be sure to visit her website- www.motherbirthla.com, on Facebook- www.facebook.com/motherbirth, or on instagram- @motherbirthla. Thank you, Tiffany, for your continued loyalty and dedication to excellence. APPA is lucky to have you.

APPAC Shining Star: Jesse Dykhuis

Jesse Dykhuis, APPACAPPA Certified Placenta Arts Specialist Jesse Dykhuis Duluth, MN

Jesse Dykhuis, APPAC is the first graduate of the APPA certification program. She lives and works in Duluth, MN and has been offering safe professional placenta encapsulation since 2009. Her business The First Place on Earth in Duluth, MN has served over 800 families. Jesse offers both raw start (Holistic) and steamed start (Traditional) method processing as well as placenta prints, placenta salves, placenta smoothies and placenta tinctures. The First Place on Earth offers both full service and express options to meet the service needs and budgets of most families.

Jesse first began offering safe professional placenta encapsulation in 2009 and has served over 800 Northland area families.

Not only is Jsse APPA’s first graduate, but also among the first to renew her APPAC credential. When asked why she chose to renew, this is what she had to say, “Certification matters to me. Being aligned with APPA means I will always have the best and most up to date information and the highest level of training and professional standard in our industry.” She states, “Even as an “old timer” I learned a lot in this program and raised the standards of my own practice.” Jesse is obviously an industry leader and well seasoned professional. We asked Jesse if she had any advice for folks interested in becoming a placenta preparation specialist. She said, “APPA. Hold yourself to the highest standard – it matters to your clients.”

Thank you, Jesse, for being part of the APPA Family. You are an asset to our industry. We wish you continued success and prosperity in your placenta services practice.

To learn more about Jesse’s practice visit her website at- www.thefirstplaceonearth.com

or visit her on facebook at- https://www.facebook.com/thefirstplaceonearth/The First Place on Earth

APPA Placenta Training Celebrates Their 3rd Anniversary!

APPA Birthday

I think we’ve lost our minds!

We’re giving away our full placenta training course to one lucky winner. APPA course giveaway

Enter to win on our Facebook page

Wait!

That’s not all we have in store for you. During the month of July, we are giving away a free copy of Placenta: The Gift of Life  By Cornelia Enning to every single new student.

APPA Free Book

AND!!!!

If you sign up using the single payment option we’ll take off $25! APPA discount

Group B Strep and Placenta Encapsulation Safety

Group B Strep and Placenta Encapsulation Safety

Group B Strep in the PlacentaThe CDC released a case study on a newborn who had a recurrent GBS infection after the mother had her placenta encapsulated. It has left a lot of people asking…

Can my placenta capsules make my baby sick?

The short answer is: probably not. A well-trained placenta arts specialist will make sure that your placenta is prepared safely for consumption, unfortunately, it seems that this specialist may not have done so. The placenta and the birth should have been assessed to see if it was fit for consumption and then the placenta should have been properly prepared. A maternal or infant infection at or immediately after delivery indicates that an active infection was present. The mother should have been counseled against encapsulation initially. The second major issue, in this case, is that proper food safety protocols may not have been followed. This likely led to the capsules containing GBS bacteria and potentially causing reinfection.

We know that proper steaming and dehydration temperatures will drastically reduce microbial counts thanks to research from Jena University, so even in the case of GBS colonization (not infection), we can confidently say that properly prepared placenta capsules will be safe for consumption.

The mode of the recurrence, in this case, is speculated to be due to the placenta capsules, however, it is impossible to know if that is the case. GBS infections do have a low incidence of recurrence in infants (0.4% to 0.9%). This recurrence has been speculated to be due to exposure to colonized family members or colonized mucous membranes.

In short, this is a case to take seriously, but it is a single case.

So what’s the long answer?

Some of you may be interested in more details. In this section, we are able to go into more detail about the CDC case study and then a review of some of the studies and research that would indicate that GBS colonization is not a contraindication for placenta encapsulation.

The CDC report was a case study of a newborn who experienced a recurrent GBS infection (1). In this case, the maternal GBS culture taken at 37 weeks was negative, showing no maternal colonization. Shortly after the birth the newborn showed signs of infection and tested positive for GBS. The baby was hospitalized for at least 11 days and was treated with antibiotics. Five days after the newborn’s release from the hospital, the baby again presented with GBS symptoms and tested positive for the same strain of GBS. At this time it was discovered that the placenta had been released and encapsulated. The mother had been taking the capsules from three days postpartum. The capsules were tested and found to contain the same GBS strain that had infected the newborn. The mother’s breastmilk was tested and did not contain GBS and thus was ruled out as a potential source of reinfection. The baby was treated and was again released from the hospital after antibiotic therapy.

Professional placenta encapsulators and birthing families must take this case very seriously. There are many parts of this case that are very concerning. While this is a single case and not a study, it would be unwise for us to ignore the important information that we can learn here.

First and foremost, due to the immediate onset of newborn infection, this placenta should not have been encapsulated. Maternal or fetal infection at or immediately following the time of delivery is an absolute contraindication to encapsulation. It is unsafe to encapsulate in these cases. The encapsulation specialist had a responsibility to verify with the client that an infection was not present.

The method of preparation is largely unknown; the encapsulator’s website was reported to state that the temperature of dehydration was between 115° F and 160° F. We have no knowledge if proper food safety protocols, universal precautions, or proper handling took place. If the placenta was dehydrated at 115° it would absolutely be unsafe for human consumption and the temperature would not be high enough to kill GBS or other known pathogens.

GBS is caused by the bacteria Streptococcus agalactiae. GBS will survive in a dry environment for months, so dehydration alone is not adequate for reduction of GBS bacteria. GBS is sensitive (meaning it will start to die) after being exposed to moist heat at a temperature that is at least 55° C (131° F) for 30 minutes(2). Based on the information we have, we can speculate that this placenta could have been inadequately prepared, leading to the presence of GBS in the finished product.

Recurrence rates of GBS have been studied at least twice; in one study the reinfection rate was found to be 0.9% and the other study showed a rate of 0.4% reinfection (3). We do not know the mode of reinfection in this case, but we do know that it did occur. Reinfection of GBS has previously speculated to occur due to colonization of mucous membranes (4). In this particular case, it is speculated that the reinfection occurred from the placenta capsules that were contaminated with GBS. The capsules could have caused the mother to continue to be colonized. As the CDC article indicates, another mode of reinfection could have been from colonized family members. In this case, it is reasonable to assume the baby was already immunocompromised due to the primary infection of GBS. It is also reasonable to speculate if the primary infection was sufficiently treated to eradication. While it is possible that the capsules could have contributed to reinfection, it is not possible to rule out reinfection from another mode, or prolonged primary infection.

In their article, the CDC states “The placenta encapsulation process does not, per se, eradicate infectious pathogens; thus, placenta capsule ingestion should be avoided”. We do have a rebuttal to this statement. Preliminary data that was released by Dr. Sophia Johnson from Jena University in Germany found that in properly prepared placenta capsules, there were no unsafe organisms found (5). The steaming and dehydration process was found to drastically reduce microbial counts. In addition to microbial testing, the study also looked at potential toxins, such as heavy metals, and also found that the levels were all well below acceptable limits. We hope that this initial research spurs further funding to continue to look into the safety of placenta encapsulation. **Edit 7/15/17** Placentas that were from mothers that tested positive for GBS colonization were not included in this testing. So while we are encouraged that the testing showed a great reduction of harmful organisms, this study can not confirm eradication of GBS bacteria. **

The CDC points out that no standards exist for placenta encapsulation. This is true, however, APPA holds their graduates to the highest standards and protocols are extensively board reviewed to ensure safe practice. If you are a current APPAC and are practicing using your board reviewed protocol you can rest assured that you are practicing at the highest level of safety. APPA strives to set those standards and train professional placenta arts specialists.

Mothers and birthing people who are seeking out placenta encapsulation should be encouraged to find properly trained encapsulation specialists. Specialists should be trained, not only in the physical encapsulation process but bloodborne pathogens and food safety. Unfortunately, some people offering this service have trained themselves by reading a blog or watching a YouTube video. This is not sufficient training. If you are looking to hire someone to encapsulate your placenta, please ask about their training, if they follow food safety protocols and temperatures, and how they are sanitizing their equipment.

GBS is a bacteria that lives on everyone’s skin and especially thrives in mucous membranes. Colonization does not mean that a mother has an active GBS infection. A positive result from a GBS test means that there is an abundance of GBS bacteria in the vaginal canal; this may lead to a newborn infection if the baby is also colonized during the birth process. Most babies that are exposed to GBS are healthy and do not become infected. However, when newborn infection does occur it can be dangerous and should be taken very seriously.

It is APPA’s goal to make sure that GBS or any pathogen, is not spread through placenta capsules. We are confident that our placenta arts specialists are trained in methods and procedures that will not allow the spread of infection. It is extremely sad that this newborn and family had to endure both GBS infection and reinfection. GBS is terrifying and the weeks in the hospital had to have been a difficult start for their family. Our best wishes go out to the family, and we hope that their journey has become more joyous and pleasant.

If you are looking for a placenta arts specialist who has a fantastic training and a focus on safety, check out the APPA directory.

If you are interested in becoming a placenta arts specialist, it is highly recommended you operate under safe protocols within the bounds of food safety and proper bloodborne pathogen training. Of course, we think APPA is the best and can prepare you to operate safely. If you have any questions about our training or safety protocols, please reach out to us. Let’s make sure you are operating in a way that protects your clients and their babies from potentially life-threatening infections.

1.Buser GL, Mató S, Zhang AY, Metcalf BJ, Beall B, Thomas AR. Notes from the Field: Late-Onset Infant Group B Streptococcus Infection Associated with Maternal Consumption of Capsules Containing Dehydrated Placenta — Oregon, 2016. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2017;66:677–678. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm6625a4.

2.Streptococcus agalactia E, Pathogen Safety Data Sheet, Public Health Agency of Canada. April

30, 2012. http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/lab-bio/res/psds-ftss/streptococcus-agalactiae-eng.php

3.Schuchat A. Epidemiology of Group B Streptococcal Disease in the United States: Shifting Paradigms. Clin. Microbiol. Rev. July 1998vol. 11 no. 3 497-513

4.Cunningham R. Recurrent group B streptococcal disease in infants: a possible explanation. Clin Infect Dis. 2000 Aug;31(2):627. Pubmed PMID: 10987746

5.Johnson, S. A scientific approach to placenta remedies: What hormones are found in placenta tissue? Preliminary Research Results. April 11, 2017. https://experiment.com/u/DKKnUQ

Graduate Spotlight: Kristen Wiertalla

I am a mom on a mission. I juggle my 15-month-old son, three dogs, two cats, backyard chickens, beekeeping, and gardening all while making a career for myself! I live a crunchy minimalist lifestyle, am an avid breastfeeding advocate, enjoy weight lifting, hiking, and DIY projects. I follow a Buddhist philosophy, and I have a zest for life but a strong passion for helping others. That is why I chose this particular profession. I get to combine my artsy side with my main drive in life, creating my perfect career! How many people can say the love what they do? I’m one of the lucky few! Making a difference in people’s lives is very important to me. I am proud to be an integral part of the birth community in my area.

Kristen serves Denver, Colorado and surrounding areas. Visit Kristen’s website to learn more about her services at https://thetranscendentplacenta.com

 

Graduate Spotlight- Sarah Purchase

Placenta Encapsulation Sarah PurchaseSarah grew up in Toronto, Ontario, and now resides in Mississauga with her two
children, and fiance. She is passionate about all things birth and aspires to be a midwife
in the near future. Sarah’s inspiration to offer mothers a chance to a better postpartum
experience stems from her own postpartum recoveries.
Sarah’s first postpartum was fraught with PPD and PPA that lingered for years.
When she became pregnant with her second child, she stumbled upon Placenta
Encapsulation. When she spoke to her doctor at her next prenatal appointment, she was
surprised to discover that the hospital only had a policy about releasing placentas
through a funeral home. She fought tooth and nail, and by the time she delivered her son, the policy had changed; she had won the right to bring her placenta home!
 Her second postpartum experience differed from her first as she felt like she was on cloud 9. She didn’t feel depressed or have anxiety when someone wanted to hold her newborn. She could finally relax. She also had an overabundance of milk and was able to share it with another family. It has been three years since she discovered Placenta Encapsulation, and is still reaping the benefits through her tincture.
Sarah chose to certify through APPA because she wanted to provide mothers with
the best possible start in their fourth trimester. Recovering from birth can be
exhausting, and placenta capsules have been reported to ease the transition through the
first few weeks. It is important to choose an APPA Certified Placenta Arts Specialist to encapsulate your
placenta because cleanliness, efficiency, and transparency are our top priorities.

Graduate Spotlight: Shannon Bacus

Shannon grew up right in the heart of Central IL but hasn’t always stayed put. From Indiana to Africa to Missouri, she has planted roots as she’s moved. She is the best of both worlds – a dreamer who loves to get stuff done. She’s a graduate of Lincoln Christian University and is a DONA Certified Birth Doula and APPA Placenta Encapsulation Specialist.

She spends her days taking care of her children and loves spending time with her husband, laughing and drinking delicious craft beers. Her home is a priority and has created it as a space of beauty, rest and comfort, which reflects her personality and care.

Empowering women with options through one-on-one consults, educating families on their choices for birth, and supporting women during their birth and postpartum brings her great fulfillment!

Graduate Spotlight: Krista Montufar

“Hi, my name is Krista Montufar.  I am a wife,married to my wonderful high school sweetheart, and I am the mother to two amazing children. 
 
My journey in birth work began with my own eventful pregnancies. Those births led me on the path of becoming educated about the birthing process and how to help other Moms fulfill the vision they have for their pregnancy, labor, birth and postpartum experiences. 
 
Serving women and families has led me on a journey of learning, and expanding my skills, which include: DONA trained birth doula, Hypnobabies Certified Hypno-doula (HCHD), Certified Holistic Doula (The Matrona), Sacred Pregnancy Belly Binding Artist, Perinatal Bereavement Doula, Training as a Lamaze Childbirth Educator and now a Certified Placenta Encapsulation Specialist through APPA.
 
Placenta Encapsulation has a place so close to my heart!  I am proud to offer this service and honored to be a part of the highly recognized and respected Association of Placenta Preparation Arts (APPA) family. My goal is to always uphold the standards of APPA, and to provide Placenta Preparation services with the highest regards to safety, sanitation and client satisfaction.

Graduate Spotlight: Courtney van Assem

My name is Courtney van Assem, I am a mother to two little girls and a baby on the way shortly. I am a farmer’s wife with a love for growing and nurturing all things. I stumbled upon placenta encapsulation while pregnant with my first daughter and fell in love with the idea. After my second daughter was born I knew that this was something I wanted to share with everyone around me. Wanting to be as informed as possible about encapsulation, I spent a while researching and decided APPA would give me the education I was looking for!

Graduate Spotlight: Liz Martinez

Hello, my name is Liz Martinez. I’m a Marine Wife and a homeschooling mother to two beautiful girls. My girls have always been my inspiration so when I was pregnant with second daughter I began to do research on encapsulation. After reading about the reported benefits I decided to encapsulate my own placenta. I felt amazing after consuming my placenta! I knew that this was something wonderful and I felt strongly that all mothers should have their placenta encapsulated! I decided that I wanted to certify so that I could learn the most that I could and feel more professional. I was so glad to have found APPA. This course is so thorough and I have gained so much knowledge. I feel so proud to be APPA Certified.