Vitamin-K and other routine procedures after birth

OBGYN Lauren Hyman, MD, shares advice on routine procedures that are done with the baby after delivery and which ones are most important to make sure you get
Vitamin-K and Other Routine Procedures After Birth
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Vitamin-K and other routine procedures after birth

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There are certain routine procedures that are done with the baby after delivery that some people are very concerned about and there are procedures that are worth fighting about and there are procedures that are not worth fighting about. If you decide that you want to delay your Hepatitis B vaccine series for a few days or a few weeks, that's up to you and it's not unreasonable if that's how you feel. But, the Erythromycin gel in the eye, that's preventing your baby from having severe eye infection from gonorrhea and chlamydia. And, you might say, "But I don't have gonorrhea and chlamydia. And, I was checked for the sexually transmitted diseases during pregnancy." And, of course, you were and I'm sure you don't have it. However, we are not in your or your husband's bedroom or your sex lives and we can't be a 100% sure that that infection is not being transmitted to your baby and, God-forbid, you decided that you don't have that done and there are certain indiscretions that you were not aware of and your baby ends up having severe eye complications including blindness because you did not decide to put Erythromycin gel in the eyes. The consequence of not putting the Erythromycin gel in the eyes if there is that type of infection is devastating and the risk to doing it are almost minimal to none. The Vitamin-K shot is to protect the baby on the off chance that the baby has a bleeding disorder. No, it's very rare for baby to have a bleeding disorder. However, Vitamin-K in the baby's body is very low and increases with time. And, if, per chance, your baby is that 0.1% of babies who do have that bleeding disorder and you did not give your child the Vitamin-K shot, are you really willing to take that risk? I don't think so. The consequences of the baby having a little bit more Vitamin-K in it's system are minimal. So, you really have to think about whether you're willing to take the risk of refusing things that are very simple, have very low risk but can really prevent very serious consequences.

OBGYN Lauren Hyman, MD, shares advice on routine procedures that are done with the baby after delivery and which ones are most important to make sure you get

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Lauren D. Hyman, MD

Obstetrician Gynecologist

Dr. Lauren Hyman is a board-certified obstetrician gynecologist. After receiving her ScB from Brown University and her medical degree from Yale University, Dr. Hyman returned to Southern California where she has been in private practice in the West Hills area for fifteen years. She can be seen weekly on Hallmark Channelʼs Home and Family Pregnancy Series and is a contributing writer on mom.me. She lives with her husband and two children in Los Angeles.

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