Bili Light rental?? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 10 Old 12-29-2006, 02:57 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Does anyone have an idea where to rent or borrow a portable bili light to treat jaundice? They make bili light blankets, so you can hold your baby while it get treatment.

My dd and I got severely traumatized when she was born, they put her in a bili box under bright lights for DAYS ON END, even though her bili level wan't critical and robbed me of precious bonding time with her.
Now that dd2 will arrive soon and I'm planning a HBAC, I want to have a plan before this happens again!! Nobody will take this child from me to do silly treatments.

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#2 of 10 Old 12-29-2006, 03:05 AM
 
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Does anyone have an idea where to rent or borrow a portable bili light to treat jaundice? They make bili light blankets, so you can hold your baby while it get treatment.

My dd and I got severely traumatized when she was born, they put her in a bili box under bright lights for DAYS ON END, even though her bili level wan't critical and robbed me of precious bonding time with her.
Now that dd2 will arrive soon and I'm planning a HBAC, I want to have a plan before this happens again!! Nobody will take this child from me to do silly treatments.
It's called a Wallaby. You can call your pediatrician and have him request one for you. We used one for my son. It was good. They still required us to go to the hospital for a daily poke to get his blood levels checked and we had two visits from a home nurse, but it was SO much better than being at the hospital.

Why do you think you will have jaundice again? ABO incompatibility or somehting?
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#3 of 10 Old 12-29-2006, 11:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, according to my research almost all BF babies have elevated bili in their blood, plus I'm Rh neg and my baby will probably be Rh positive, as is my dd1. I did the Rhogam last time, so I don't expect complications per se from the incompatability.
However I want to have a plan, as I felt completely overwhelmed after a csec and this horrible bili box experience. I still start crying when I think about it. Also I want to avoid my newborn being poked as much as was my dd1. They can do a skin test as well, a bilirubin reader that they can use on the forehead. I will probably refuse to have her blood drawn, and if all goes well, I will most likely have my dh install one or two red warming lights on our sunny window side, so I can possibly strip the baby and expose her to sunlight and stay warm at the same time. That is all just prep work, all just in case.
I saw the wally light online. Maybe they have something like that at my hospital where I can take it home...

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#4 of 10 Old 12-29-2006, 11:54 AM
 
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Well in england they just tell you to put your baby in front of your big window at home!! (and theres not much sunlight there in the winter, either, trust me!) it worked for my jaundiced baby.

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#5 of 10 Old 12-29-2006, 12:09 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, thank you! Natural light should work fine, as long as it's not directly in the outside sunlight causing a sunburn. I have a feeling that this bili light box torture is just one more medically unneccessary treatment ( in most cases). I understand the risk of severely elevated bili levels, but in most cases a natural treatment seems soooo much saner. Is there anyone who's had problems from elevated bili levels??

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#6 of 10 Old 12-29-2006, 12:41 PM
 
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My ds1 had very high bili levels for several days before they called me to tell me he had to be readmitted for a double bank of bililights. I strongly feel that this severe jaundice for an extended period of time contributed to his autism. Of course, that's just anecdotal, but high bililevels can cause neurological damage and autism is a neurological disorder. At 1 week, i brought him in for his checkup and the doc said he looked yellow and wanted tests that day (friday) and hte following monday. On tuesday, he called and told em the levels were 23/24, which were high enough to possibly cause seisures.


Anyway, w/ds2, he was also jaundiced, but we got the biliblankets at home (after doing a day of lights in the hospital). The doc called the insurance, and they had a medical supply company deliver them, show me how to use them, and pick them up when we were finished. No problem, but we did have to do at least 2 heel pricks to get the levels (once before, one after).

Jaundice is generally easy to treat, but should be taken seriously.

Congrats on your new little one.

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#7 of 10 Old 12-29-2006, 05:46 PM
 
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Yes, you can use sunlight for a mild to moderately jaundiced baby and they should be fine. But for a baby with severe jaundice, they really need to be under the light. It's important to monitor the blood levels...I don't see why you wouldn't do this in a really bad case. Risking brain damage just isn't worth it to me. I waited five days to have my son's levels checked and at that point he was at 20...the poor kid was stainded carrot orange for a month.

I also wouldn't assume that your baby will have severe jaundice simply because they are breastfed. There are usually other risk factors at play, such as medicalized birth, use of pitocin, ABO incompatibilty, Asian heritage and other factors. Breastmilk jaundice can be severe enough to warrant the lights, but usually isn't.
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#8 of 10 Old 12-30-2006, 04:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We will certainly take it serious, in case it were to happen again, but I will not let my dd2 be put in a box by herself for days on end, but request other forms of bililight, if it is more than moderate. Does anyone know where they draw the line from "don't worry" to moderate and severe cases?

shelbean91, I'm sorry to hear what happened to your ds1. It sounds like the doctor wasn't really on top of what was happening to your child at the time.
Thanks for sharing your story.

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#9 of 10 Old 12-30-2006, 04:59 PM
 
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Well in england they just tell you to put your baby in front of your big window at home!! (and theres not much sunlight there in the winter, either, trust me!) it worked for my jaundiced baby.
My first dd was jaundiced and that's what her ped said, too!

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#10 of 10 Old 12-31-2006, 01:29 AM
 
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The sunlight in the window thing does work, but when you get up to levels above about 15 or 16 the baby starts getting reaaaaaaaaaaallllly sleepy and then you start having all kinds of issues. They really need to be on the light at this point.

Normal jaundice levels are under 11
Moderate 12-14/15
Moderate/Severe 16-18
Anything above 18 is severe.

Nani, like I said before my son's level was around 20, which is pretty bad...over 24 and you have brain damage. And he was fine with the blanket/Wallaby at home. I just wrapped him right up in it next to me in bed and nursed away. It was wonderful. It took about 2 days for his levels to really start dropping.

I don't blame you for not wanting to go to the hospital. That does sound awful and traumatic.
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