Why NOT the eye gunk? - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 67 Old 08-18-2009, 05:37 PM
 
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I'm learning a lot here! I think that in most circumstances I would now refuse, based on the information in this thread.

I am considering the exception of a water birth though. STDs aren't the only kind of bacteria that can cause infection. I thinking in particular of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a water borne bacteria that is harmless in healthy adults, but is a major cause of infection in hospitals, due to its ability to grow in just about anything, including distilled water, antibacterial soap, and plastic. It can cause burn infections, UTIs, and eye ulcers, among a lot of other things.

It exists in small amounts in drinking water, and normally doesn't hurt anyone. I'm kinda leery of the idea of having a baby in it, though. Would the drops maybe be beneficial in this case, where a little one is lacking the normal flora an adult has developed to prevent infection?

Admittedly I know a lot more about germs than babies, so if someone smart wants to come along and tell me to zip it, go for it.


ETA: to clarify, I mean that in that one case, where a newborn hasn't recieved exposure to all of the normal flora that hangs out on the eye in particular, would it be at all beneficial? I wasn't addressing any other kinds of infection, or any time after. They develop the good bacteria eventually, and you don't normally submerge a baby when you bathe them, right? Just when they're born.
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#62 of 67 Old 08-18-2009, 06:55 PM
 
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Originally Posted by caudex View Post
I'm learning a lot here! I think that in most circumstances I would now refuse, based on the information in this thread.

I am considering the exception of a water birth though. STDs aren't the only kind of bacteria that can cause infection. I thinking in particular of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a water borne bacteria that is harmless in healthy adults, but is a major cause of infection in hospitals, due to its ability to grow in just about anything, including distilled water, antibacterial soap, and plastic. It can cause burn infections, UTIs, and eye ulcers, among a lot of other things.

It exists in small amounts in drinking water, and normally doesn't hurt anyone. I'm kinda leery of the idea of having a baby in it, though. Would the drops maybe be beneficial in this case, where a little one is lacking the normal flora an adult has developed to prevent infection?

Admittedly I know a lot more about germs than babies, so if someone smart wants to come along and tell me to zip it, go for it.
Hospital bugs are creepy.

I can't imagine that eye antibiotics will prevent a UTI. Also, if its a water based bacteria, wouldn't the baby be succeptible giving just a normal bath? Why would a hospital tub be any different? It will get their water from the same source. Are you going to put gunk in a baby's eyes every time you give them a bath?

Heather Mike Married 8/1/99 Mom to Charlotte Aug 04, Nov 06, and Katherine Oct 07
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#63 of 67 Old 08-18-2009, 07:50 PM
 
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I haven't read any of the replies but there is no eye gunk here in the UK and we aren't a nation of the blind.

We are also a largely intact nation with no national crisis having occured so don't circumcise your boys either.
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#64 of 67 Old 08-19-2009, 07:39 AM
 
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Reading along. We live in NY and were able to deny the eye ointment at our last birth (at a natural birth friendly hospital) with the reasoning that I birth via c-section. The nurse just said "I've been a nurse for 20 years and NEVER even thought about that." when my husband told her there was no need to do it and that we refused.

Now, I am going to be birthing at a much more intervention happy hospital, that is known for being a lot worse with these things. I *have* heard plenty of stories of CPS in NY taking custody of the baby just long enough to do the eye ointment, Vit K and Hep B, then returning custody, if the parents try to refuse the Vit K or eye ointment. You can deny Hep B (though they may harass you about it).

I just told dh that we would try again with denying the eye ointment, but- that if push comes to shove- I do NOT want CPS in our homeschooling, extended BFing, co-sleeping (with no crib even set up), non-vaccinating life. So- if a fight starts, we will have to let them do it and then wipe it off.: I feel like denying the Hep B is my #1 concern, and if I have to allow the other 2, so that CPS doesn't come in and give all 3, I will reluctantly do it.

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#65 of 67 Old 08-19-2009, 12:41 PM
 
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Originally Posted by caudex View Post
I'm learning a lot here! I think that in most circumstances I would now refuse, based on the information in this thread.

I am considering the exception of a water birth though. STDs aren't the only kind of bacteria that can cause infection. I thinking in particular of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a water borne bacteria that is harmless in healthy adults, but is a major cause of infection in hospitals, due to its ability to grow in just about anything, including distilled water, antibacterial soap, and plastic. It can cause burn infections, UTIs, and eye ulcers, among a lot of other things.

It exists in small amounts in drinking water, and normally doesn't hurt anyone. I'm kinda leery of the idea of having a baby in it, though. Would the drops maybe be beneficial in this case, where a little one is lacking the normal flora an adult has developed to prevent infection?

Admittedly I know a lot more about germs than babies, so if someone smart wants to come along and tell me to zip it, go for it.


ETA: to clarify, I mean that in that one case, where a newborn hasn't recieved exposure to all of the normal flora that hangs out on the eye in particular, would it be at all beneficial? I wasn't addressing any other kinds of infection, or any time after. They develop the good bacteria eventually, and you don't normally submerge a baby when you bathe them, right? Just when they're born.
Yes, so what you are saying, I think is this. There are infection causing bacteria that are known to be very common in hospitals, enough to be a problem for them, and they will grow in water or even in other places usually hostile to bacteria. So it could be present in a tub used for a water birth in a hospital, and since the baby would be submerged, get into babies eyes. Since it is known to be virulent, and baby has no protective bacteria colonies present yet, perhaps this could cause eye infection. Is that about it?

This does sound like something that could happen - I have no idea if it does. But there would, I suspect, normally be signs of the infection as per usual for eye infections. Why not treat it then?

The disadvantages of treating prophylacticly would be interfering with the colonization of good bacteria and blurry vision - but in the big picture, I think overuse of antibiotics in hospitals is really bad - virulent bactiria like the ones you mentioned will simply become impossible to treat.

So I think it is bad practice to treat that way unless the infection will not present symptoms for some reason.

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#66 of 67 Old 08-19-2009, 11:14 PM
 
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Originally Posted by womenswisdom View Post
While I agree that hospitals are more "germy" than many places, I see it as equivelent to putting antibiotic eye ointment in my kids' eyes after a trip to the grocery store or other public place. The L&D floor is not an infectious disease ward, it has mostly very healthy pregnant women in it. The L&D nurses and staff are no more germy than anyone you would encounter in public and will likely not have much contact with a baby that is rooming-in. And why would they be touching the baby's eyes anyway?

ETA: On the off chance your baby does develop some kind of infection, it can be treated very effectively at that time. The idea behind treating for gonorrhea and chlamydia prophylatically is that these diseases can be very serious and cause blindness. Not so for your run-of-the-mill eye infection.

Also, infections became more common when birth moved to the hospital because NO ONE WAS WASHING THEIR HANDS between the morgue and the L&D area. Not because bacteria was "floating around".
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#67 of 67 Old 08-19-2009, 11:34 PM
 
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Originally Posted by orangefoot View Post
I haven't read any of the replies but there is no eye gunk here in the UK and we aren't a nation of the blind.

We are also a largely intact nation with no national crisis having occured so don't circumcise your boys either.
It's always interesting to hear how other countries do things differently, and yet the babies are still fine!

I would only do the eye gunk if I was positive for gonorrhea or chlamydia. Other than that, eye infections present with symptoms, and I would push the doctors to treat if an infection was there. No need to start the antibiotic overuse at birth, you know?
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