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Vitamin K shot?

I had my baby at home two weeks ago. Before she was born, my midwife gave me some information on the pro's and con's of the Vitamin K shot and left it up to me to decide whether or not to have it done. At the time, I remember looking at the information and thinking that it was unnecessary, so I opted not to have it done. Now 2 weeks later, we've taken the baby to the pediatrician and he says it HAS to be done. He made me feel like a terrible mother for not doing it. The problem is, he can't do it out of his office, so he told me to just call my local hospital's nursery to see if they'll do it. I've called three hospitals and no one will do it. I don't know what to do now. Was the information my midwife gave me incorrect, and have I put my daughter's life in jeopardy because of this decision? I'm feeling terrible, and I don't know how to fix this.

11 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    You need to get your doctor to call and explain the situation, or call the midwife and see if he/she will do it for you.

    I found this by typing in a google search "vitamin k shot"

    The breastfed infant can be supplemented with several low oral doses of liquid vitamin K9 (possibly 200 micrograms per week for 5 weeks, totaling 1 milligram, even more gradual introduction may be better). Alternatively, the nursing mother can take vitamin K supplements daily or twice weekly for 10 weeks. (Supplementation of the pregnant mother does not alter fetal levels but supplementation of the nursing mother does increase breastmilk and infant levels.)

    Either of these provides a much safer rate of vitamin K supplementation. Maternal supplementation of 2.5 mg per day, recommended by one author, provides a higher level of vitamin K through breastmilk than does formula,10 and may be much more than necessary.

    Formula provides 10 times the U.S. recommended daily allowance," and this RDA is about 2 times the level in unsupplemented human milk. One milligram per day for 10 weeks for mother provides a cumulative extra 1 milligram to her infant over the important period and seems reasonable. Neither mother nor infant require supplementation if the infant is injected at birth.1

    Why don't you just supplement the vitamin k?

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  • 1 decade ago

    Isn't it amazing that the human race has gotten along just fine without worrying about Vitamin K in newborns? Isn't modern science wonderful? (that was sarcasm, in case anyone missed it!) Even the March of Dimes acknowledges that it is exceedingly rare for newborns to need it (look at it this way: how many newborns do you know who are put in a situation where they would be cut or otherwise injured and bleed? How many do you know that died as a result of it for no reason other than their blood wouldn't clot? I'm willing to bet the answer by everyone on the planet is "zero").

    Regardless, there is no law in any US State requiring babies to be given Vitamin K, as its benefits, if any, are in dispute (all States have a requirement for babies to be checked for it, but that's more a liability issue than a practical one). You might be asked if you'd give your consent to have the shot administered, but, again, it is not legally required.

    As far as the pediatrician, I presume that he found a problem with your baby's clotting, which, BTW, can only be done through blood tests. Unless he/she is a complete moron, I seriously doubt that he/she intentionally berated you, as there would be no way for anyone - - doctor or layman - - to know about it in advance (plenty of adults have Vitamin K deficiency without realizing it, and get along just fine). So, you probably were just overreacting, though understandably so. BTW, it is also available in liquid form.

    As far as not being able to get the shot, again, I think you're misunderstanding a LOT of people, because Vitamin K shots and drops are readily available at most pediatrician's offices, hospitals, and pharmacies, or, if not, can be easily ordered.

    So, in answer to your multiple questions:

    1) You claim that the midwife gave you pros and cons about it, but since you didn't tell us what she told or gave you, there's no way to confirm it one way or the other.

    2) No, you have not put your daughter's life in jeopardy.

    3) If your pediatrician said get the shot, then get the shot.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Vitamin K injections only protect against early onset HDN which can't occur after 2 weeks. Seriously get a new pediatrician.

    And there is little evidence it is beneficial in any case.

    From a WHO (World Health Organization) publication - "

    Care in the first hours includes: . . .

    * administering vitamin K to the baby if country policy prescribes it, either by injection or orally. However, the evidence for routine administration of vitamin K to all newborns to prevent the relatively rare haemorrhagic disease of the newborn is still lacking.

    Administration of Vitamin K to Newborns

    Research has demonstrated that the use of a single, oral dose of vitamin K is not protective for the more severe mortality and morbidity of LHDN. (Greer et al., 1988; Greer et al., 1995; McNinch and Tripp, 1991; Motohara et al, 1987; Shinzawa et al., 1989; Von Kries et al., 1987a)

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  • Kiari
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    some states it is a law and is required to be done.... just the same as certain blood tests that are required. (ugh heel prick at a couple days old.. it was horrible BUT it was required)

    i dont think its required everywhere though.

    Also try calling the health department.. and call your midwife back. tell her you want this shot and the pediatrician said it isnt to late. Also, call your pediatrician back and tell him no one will give it to you.

    I have been looking it up.. and I cannot understand any reason why you wouldn't give your baby the vitamin K shot. I do see reasons that women are against vaccinations.. but why this? I think perhaps your midwife has outdated info.. or just has no clue.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Your midwife was correct. It does NOT have to be done. It is a good shot, and can be a good thing, but it is not necessary, unless you have a boy and want him circumsized, then they require it. I am not sure why your doctor cannot give it out of his office, he should be able to, But if you really want the shot, go to your public heath department and inquire about it. Good luck!

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  • 1 decade ago

    Your baby would have shown signs of trouble by now if she were going to.

    My son had it but only because I have a blood clotting disorder. I also probably would have given it to him if he had been circumcised.

    But I think your midwife is right. Did your ped tell you why he thinks it's necessary?

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  • 1 decade ago

    Like Kiaria said its law many places, and for good reason. If I were you Id find a new Midwife. Only about one in 200 children will have a problem getting enough Vitamin K from natural sorces but that still gives room for concern. You are far from a bad mother for following a medical practioners advice.

    Source(s): Answer from Dr. John V. McDonald, director of Neonatal Services at Providence St. Vincent Medical Center: All babies do need a vitamin K injection within the first few hours of life. This is necessary to ensure that their blood has a normal ability to clot. (also I worked Labor and delivery for 3 yrs)
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  • 1 decade ago

    This is the problem I have with midwives. They leave it all up to the parents..which sounds like a good idea, but isn't.

    If someone got hurt and had to be rushed to the hospital in an ambulance, would you want the paramedics to ask you about everything they did before they did it? I wouldn't! I would want them to do whatever was necessary.

    This is why we have doctors--because they know what's best for us. Doctors mandate things because it's what needs to be done. It's not like they sit around saying "Well, maybe we should make a Vitamin K shot mandatory...ya know, just for fun?" They decide these things because they want what's best for your baby.

    Don't feel bad about this...just make sure your baby has what he/she needs.

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  • XO
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    here is one link that i appears that this is NOT a requirement.....and that if you supplement your diet with more vitl K then it will pass onto your newborn via your breastmilk

    and if your newborn has not yet presented problems of brain bleeding then why is your pedi being an as s about this?!

    tell him to chill the *** out

    edit.......and below to doctors being all about mandating things for our health....that is a bunch of crap......doctors are out to make a buck.....doctors let the pharmaceautical industry tell them what to do

    vit K shot=big pharma

    and it also appears that formula fed babies have bigger problems with vit K issues vs. breast babies

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  • -
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    no, its fine. my baby got her first round of vitimin k at 2 days old, they told me i should repeat it once a month, but i decided not to, because its just not necessary. the last time i spoke to the public health nurse she said it was fine not to give my baby it. your doctor was over reacting, you dont have to give your baby anything you dont want to. x

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