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Meconium and Suctioning

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
Neither one of my first two babies had meconium in the amniotic fluid, but because they were both hospital births, they were suctioned anyhow.

We're planning a UC with #3 and I was wondering if I need to break out the bulb syringe for suctioning whether or not there is meconium. I was planning on not suctioning but then I recalled the doomsday message of "lung infection in babies not heavily suctioned when meconium is in the amniotic fluid".

Any ideas???
Regards,
Jenna
post #2 of 3
Nope, nope, nope, nope, no!

A bulb syringe is useless at birth. If you're looking to really suction babies, a bulb won't cut it. Even with longer tubing (a deLee), studies are showing that it does more to possibly aggravate the situation. Definitely putting anything in the back of the throat of a newborn stimulates the vagal response and lowers breathing and heart rate.

There have been a number of studies to show that suctioning at birth does nothing to improve outcome as far as pneumonia related to meconium aspiration.

There is a school of thought out there that the inhalation of meconium comes IN UTERO with the insult of no oxygen, not the first breath outside of the uterus.

I think one of the hardest issues with many planning a UC is getting out of the "provder distress" role that we all see happen in attended births - at home or hospital. Ideally, you can trust your instinct - it will always be evidence-based. However, the practices that are routine with attended birth are rarely evidence-based.
post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 
Many thanks. We will pass on using it altogether.
Regards, Jenna
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