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I've read a lot of mom's posts about reserving vitamin K for traumatic births only. What is considered a traumatic birth warranting vitmamin K to those of you with this plan? Also, are you going to go ahead and get a prescription and have it at home just in case there is a traumatic birth? I am not anxious to engage in another homebirth discussion with my ped in order to get a prescription, but I will if that is what needs to be done. Those of you doing oral administration, where do you get it? Is that a prescription also?

Another thought regarding oral v. shot. I know oral doesn't cause pain or leave room for infection at injection site, but don't you think it will also be invasive? Just a thought. I bet it tastes nasty and it's awkward getting baby to swallow it, and don't you have to do it more than once?

I'm 35/36 weeks and realizing I have no idea what I'm going to do about the vitamin K issue. It takes a little more initiative since I'll be at home.

Any thoughts from my Dec mamas?
 

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Not a Dec mommy, but saw this in the new posts section...

I bet your midwife will have the vitamin K with her if you want it. Both of mine did and I know my sister's (selazenby) did. Same with the eye ointment.

My first (daughter) was unexpectedly born by cesarean. She did not get the vitamin K because there was nothing "traumatic" about her birth (for her). She was gently lifted out. The vitamin K is generally used if it's suspected that there could have been a lot of banging around in the birth canal, etc.

When my second (son) was born vaginally, we did the vit K. He was born after 63 hours of labor, 2 hours of pushing. Both of the midwives as well as my husband and I felt that maybe that was a bit much and went for the vit K.

I didn't plan to have either of my kids at the hospital, but that's how it worked out both times. However, when planning their births, I never thought about vit K, eye ointment, any of that stuff. The midwives had it and it was not on my list of things to worry about! So, I'd just call your midwife and check!
 

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I asked my midwife about this the other day. She said that they recommend the K shot if the baby has excessive molding or bruising or is to be circumcised, but that otherwise it's perfectly fine to skip it. I don't think they offer the oral version but honestly I think I'd prefer the injection anyways, since I don't really want my baby having anything by mouth but breastmilk for the first 6 months at least.

I don't anticipate needing it; my first was born after a longish (22h total) labor but only 20 minutes of pushing, and had little molding and no bruising. And circumcision just isn't happening to any child of mine.
 

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We had a forceps delivery with my dd ...she was born FAST (4hrs of labor...first child!) and was dragged out of me with a lot of bruising (and tearing on my part).

That was definitely a traumatic birth in my book.

A normal vaginal birth IMO isn't all that traumatic and we are opting for oral vit K anyway. Definitely for me and possibly for the baby.

The difference between the shot and the oral...

Shot is injected into the muscle and the phenophaline (which I just butchered the spelling of) that is used to synthesize the vit K out of the alfalpha isn't able to be processed by the liver. In oral vit k it is able to be processed, as well as the fact that it is a significantly smaller dose given over time instead of all in one go.

If my explanation makes any sense, I hope it helps!
 

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We arent doing the Vit K. The injection is too large of an amount of Vit K. In some studies they linked the higher doses to an increased risk in leukemia. On day 8 their bodies start producing it more. I figure there has to be a reason why. Our bodies are wonderfully made. Colostrum is also rich in Vit K. I'm taking alfalfa tablets now and will continue to do while breastfeeding.

If my baby came out bleeding or something I'd rather have oral Vit K as it's a smaller amount but I think that is hard to get. Some places can order it from Britain. I think my midwife says she carries it (injection though) in case we want it but I told her that we dont. We wont be cutting our baby either, our son is intact and if "she" comes out a he, he will be intact of course.
 

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Oh, I forgot about the alfalfa! My MW had me take capsules of alfalfa starting around 37 weeks and continuing for 2 weeks or so after John was born. You could try that.

Also - external bleeding isn't the only reason vit K is used. I think internal bleeding (brain, organs, etc) is more the concern.
 

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you can buy oral vitamin K (extracted from nettle i believe) thru www.birthwithlove.com. i haven't gotten mine yet, but don't remember it being pricey from last time. i think you administer a drop at 3 hours, 3 days and maybe 7 days??? (email the lady at birthwithlove, she's helpful). for us, we don't want any extra shots, but figure the K isn't hurtful and could be helpful should the need arise. plus, FOR US (no flaming here, pls!) if it's a boy, he will be circumcised like his dad and bros. (it's not my choice at all, but the only one of the baby decision-making questions i have had to give to hubby along the way.)

good luck with your decision. if you'd feel better having it on hand, it's a very low cost insurance policy.
 

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I ama December Mama...but mine is December 2004


Anyway...I read that the shock of the vitamin K shot to the systme can lead to all sorts of problems. I had thought I'd go with increasing my vitamin K to give enough through breast milk or try the oral Vit K drops so that baby would only get a little at each dose. In the end I didn't do either...I guess that could be considered risky BUT I felt like the risk was low and in the end everyone is/was fine.
 

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Here's a link to a Mercola article that made me decide to go with oral supplementation, if any.

Of particular interest would be the paragraph entitled "A Better Solution" and then a link at the bottom to buy Vitamin K supplements.

I'm 35w3d, and still waffling on whether I'll do oral supplementation at all, and if so, if I'll supplement the baby directly, or just take oral supplements myself.

I'm going to look into that birthwithlove source, and probably make a decision by the weekend.

Just thought I'd share where I am in the process.

Jen
 

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