Second time (since I knew more) I said no to Vitamin K, eye goop, and my homebirth midwife did not push GBS testing
(which I loved because I was GBS positive the last time and got a ton of IV antibiotics). I also do not vax.
I am with ctdoula
though on newborn screening (heel prick).
There is no con. It's just a simple heel prick that could screen for diseases. We opted to get expanded testing (test for every single thing they test - about 40 - versus the measley 4-8 states test for, depending on what state you live in.)
There was an article in People Magazine about this issue last July, so I sent the following e-mail to my pregnant girlfiends at the time. They highlighted a heartbreaking story of parents who lost their preschooler very suddenly. He got sick (out of nowhere) and ended up dying. They didn't know he had a genetic disease (easily treatable had they known, had he been tested at birth.) There was another story of a family who did find out (kid was fine) because of the test. Savebabies.org has family stories. Here is one:The economic cost of not screening - Brett's story
|Though parents may not realize it, every newborn baby is automatically tested (hospital births) for a variety of potentially fatal genetic diseases — many of which are easily treatable if caught early enough. But surprisingly, when it comes to genetic screening, not all babies are treated equally. Depending on which state you live in, the number of diseases for which tests are conducted varies widely. And even though additional testing is relatively inexpensive and easily available, many parents are totally in the dark about their options.
The state of California pays for Newborn Screening of 4 diseases only (1. Galactosemia 2. Hypothyroidism (congenital) 2. Phenylketonuria (PKU) 4. Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) and Hemoglobinopathies).
However, in Nevada, the state requires screening for 34 diseases:http://www.savebabies.org/states/nevada.php
So you see, the problem is... there are MANY screening tests available, but most parents don't know about it. Some states screen for more tests than others. The March of Dimes
are trying to get states to expand their testing. States are fighting it because it costs them more money. (Well, personally, if states can pay for it, then parents should be educated about it and pay for it if they can. Most families can. The states should pay for families who don't have the means. That's fair.)Prevention
Affected babies are at risk of mental retardation, physical disabilities and even death if they are not diagnosed and treated early. Comprehensive newborn screening gives you the opportunity to protect your baby from the preventable complications of undiagnosed problems. If your baby is affected, newborn screening can play a key role in allowing you child to live a normal life.
My midwife mentioned this to me (because my 6 yr old nephew, born to David's sister, was born with a genetic problem - low muscle tone and he still doesn't speak) as something we may be interested in (i.e., supplemental testing.) (I am happy she mentioned it, but I truly every family should do this, because you never know.)
She handed me the brochure for PEDIATRIX SCREENING
, a company that does the screening for an additional 40 genetic diseases.
* You call them up, before your baby arrives to order the kit $89.95 plus next day shipping $6.95.http://www.pediatrixscreening.com/
(I had a homebirth the second time and my baby was born 3 weeks early! A day after she was born, I rushed and ordered the kit and it came in time for my midwife's check-up.)
They mail you the kit and you hand it over to your hospital or midwife. 2-3 days after the baby is born, they remove blood from the baby's heel just to get a few drops to submit for the test. This can be done at the same time the California tests are done. So they do 1 heel prick and put 4 drops of blood on one form and then 4 drops of blood on another form, and mail it to those labs.
Chances are very high that your baby is perfectly healthy. But this (to me) is a no brainer... it just screens the baby who has X disease... and then they are identified and can be treated early.
TODAY SHOW highlighted the problem a few weeks ago. The March of Dimes is trying to increase awareness.http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5318863
My pediatrician's office called me this week to let me know that the Pediatrix test came back negative. I wasn't surprised (or stressed over the test results - in my heart I knew she was OK.) I was just happy that I knew about the test because it helped me feel proactive.
I just thought of a con. There are some diseases that are fatal. I suppose some parents would not want to know in advance. Still, I would like my children tested. Because if they had a disease that was treatable, and died because we didn't know, that would be far more tragic.
RE - Vitamin K, you should read Baby Matters by Linda Palmer
She mentions some studies linking the Vit K shot to Leukemia. I probably posted the info on some vax thread (do a search - good luck finding it.)