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Old 12-17-2012, 01:53 AM   #1
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Eye ointment?

Can somebody explain to me what exactly the ointment is (or drops?) that get put into newborns eyes directly after birth? I see some people say that they are declining it and I'd love to hear your reasons for not wanting to. I don't actually even know the purpose of it so whether you are for or against it, let me know your thoughts on it! TIA

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Old 12-17-2012, 02:06 AM   #2
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The eye drops are antibiotic and I feel very strongly against unnecessary antibiotics especially in a newborn.
Antibiotics kill all the good natural flora.

There are stds that can cause blindness and rather than testing mothers they decided it was a good idea to treat every single baby.
I guess because someone might not think it possible they have an STD they don't take a chance.

With my last 2 I simply requested a test late in pregnancy (a urine sample) that cleared me.
On that basis I declined them.

Some people even medical professional may try to tell you it will prevent normal eye infections but that is not its purpose. It has just become so ingrained in newborn care and they don't like people refusing it.

Eta testing wasn't required for me to refuse. I just did it to be 100% no one ever thinks their spouse might cheat. I think that's why they do it routinely

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Old 12-17-2012, 05:16 AM   #3
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Any prophylactics during pregnancy/after birth - *especially* antibiotics - make me nervous. There's no reason for every woman and her child to be subject to routine administration of anything! Too many care providers totally skip the risk-benefit discussion with their patients and just say "do this because this is what we do".
Eye ointment is to prevent gonorrhea colonization in the infants eyes. Anyone who tries to tell you that it's for any other bacteria is NOT telling you the truth. You also do not have to undergo STD testing to decline the ointment (although the attending might freak out and make you sign an AMA). I am not having STD tests done because I'm in a monogamous relationship, and in the event we have to transfer to a hospital, we are not having eye ointment administered, either - because it is just plain unnecessary.

Here is some good info on the topic: http://www.gentlebirth.org/archives/eyeointm.html
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Old 12-17-2012, 08:20 AM   #4
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Re: Eye ointment?

I thought that they were for syphlis.

My son (4 years old now) got them and he didn't want to open his eyes for 3 days afterwards. Don't really blame the kid. You open your eyes for the first time and someone shoves these drops in your eyes! I wouldn't want to open my eyes either!

I am refusing them this time around because of what my son went through, and because I have been tested for EVERY STD under the sun in order to do the FET (IVF) to get pregnant. DH is in a VERY long dry spell right now because I can't have relations with this pregnancy. I am high risk enough and they have me not having relations for at least 12 weeks. DH would never cheat on me but even if he did during this dry spell it is a mute point. If that wasn't reason enough, I am refusing them because the only way I can transmit Syphlis, if I had it (which seriously I think I have been tested for it at least 8 times since I have been married), is by the child being born vaginally. I can't go into labor with my history of 2 classical c-sections, so this baby isn't going near my vagina. They may have went in that way, but they will come out another way!

Good luck in your decision!
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Old 12-17-2012, 09:12 AM   #5
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Re: Eye ointment?

its so weird since i at least was tested for stds when pregnant

DS got them in the hospital before i could say no. He ended up with pink eye that week! (kills even the good bacteria letting bad bacteria take over)

DD was born at home and opened her eyes much more those first few days! no issues with infections
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Old 12-17-2012, 10:06 AM   #6
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Re: Eye ointment?

Good info, I wondered as well.
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Old 12-17-2012, 10:13 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mommy24babes View Post
The eye drops are antibiotic and I feel very strongly against unnecessary antibiotics especially in a newborn.
Antibiotics kill all the good natural flora.

There are stds that can cause blindness and rather than testing mothers they decided it was a good idea to treat every single baby.
I guess because someone might not think it possible they have an STD they don't take a chance.

With my last 2 I simply requested a test late in pregnancy (a urine sample) that cleared me.
On that basis I declined them.

Some people even medical professional may try to tell you it will prevent normal eye infections but that is not its purpose. It has just become so ingrained in newborn care and they don't like people refusing it.

Eta testing wasn't required for me to refuse. I just did it to be 100% no one ever thinks their spouse might cheat. I think that's why they do it routinely
This. Neither of my kids have had them. I'm STD free so I don't worry about it.

I'm mobile.... sorry for the typos!
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Old 12-17-2012, 11:50 AM   #8
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I decline because: 1) I'm in a monogamous relationship 2) STD testing has always come back negative 3) both my babies ended up c/s anyway.

Both times nurses have gotten pushy with hubby about it, saying they would call DHS or he had to sign papers, but they were always bluffing because none of those things happened. At the last hospital they called us "the naturalists" lol. Guess not many refuse it.
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Old 12-17-2012, 01:57 PM   #9
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Re: Eye ointment?

It is to prevent transmission of STD (I think clamidia or gonarhhea but I can't remember which of the two) that a mother doesn't know she has, has no symptoms, and got after any testing might have occurred. Untreated, it can cause blindness.

It's a public health policy type thing - saving a child from being blinded when a mother thinks she's okay for the cost of the drops (about .25 cents) given that testing of mom at birth is more expensive and results take more time than just putting drops on in the first place while baby's still in the hospital.

It's based on the theory that mom probably knows what she's been up to, can't say with 100% certainty what dad/partner's been up to and for .25 cents, we can prevent blindness in a baby and isn't that a good enough reason?

I kind of get it. I'm sure there are enough women who found out they were being cheated on when they ended up with "something going on down there."
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Old 12-17-2012, 03:56 PM   #10
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Re: Eye ointment?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AniMommy View Post
It's based on the theory that mom probably knows what she's been up to, can't say with 100% certainty what dad/partner's been up to and for .25 cents, we can prevent blindness in a baby and isn't that a good enough reason?

I kind of get it. I'm sure there are enough women who found out they were being cheated on when they ended up with "something going on down there."
This theory is also assuming Mom and Dad don't get baby to a doctor when their newborn clearly has a an eye infection.
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