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Why should i get a vitamin k shot for my baby?

11 doctor answers15 doctors weighed in
Dr. Scott Katz
Pediatrics 27 years experience
Prevents bleeding: Vitamin k is crucial to prevent bleeding, and newborns cannot make enough vitamin K by themselves. It is critical to receive this shot at birth, otherwise bleeding, brain damage and death can result. It is safe for your baby to receive the shot.
Dr. Robert Kwok
Pediatrics 34 years experience
Ensures enough Vit.K: Before the days of newborn vitamin K shots, some babies would have bleeding due to inadequate vitamin k. Now, each newborn gets a vitamin K shot to prevent that type of bleeding problem.
Dr. Cory Annis
Internal Medicine and Pediatrics 30 years experience
Get vitamin K: Seems weird and painful, doesn't it? However, that shot immediately after birth helps stop a thankfully rare but severe and often deadly cause of infant bleeding. The reason it is given at birth is that later, it's just plain too late. The damage is already done.
Dr. Bert Mandelbaum
Pediatrics 25 years experience
Prevent bleeding : Vitamin k deficiency can cause bleeding in otherwise healthy infants. Administration of injectable vitamin K has been shown to prevent both early and late vitamin-k-deficient bleeding. The american academy of pediatrics supports the administration of vitamin K to all newborns. The policy statement can be read here: http://aappolicy.Aappublications.Org/cgi/content/full/pediatrics;112/1/191.
Dr. Victoria Acharya
Specializes in Pediatrics
Prevent bleeding: The vitamin K shot after birth prevents a severe bleeding complication in the first few days to weeks of life. It is most common in exclusively breastfed babies and can cause severe intracranial (brain) hemorrhage (bleeding). (there are actually three types of vitamin K deficient bleeding after birth, the injection prevents the two more common types.).
Dr. Kristen Stuppy
Pediatrics 26 years experience
To prevent bleeding: The fetus gets little vit k from the placenta. Vit k is needed to help clot blood normally, and without it babies are at risk for severe bleeding. Oral vit k is available, but there are reports of bleeding in babies who received multiple oral vit k doses instead of one injectable dose. The risk of severe bleeding is overall low, but the risk of injectable vitamin K is lower. Why risk bleeding?
Dr. Kevin Windisch
Pediatrics 26 years experience
YES: Vitamin k shots prevent bleeding into the baby's brain. The brain damage caused by lack of vitamin k induced bleeding is forever. You only have one chance to prevent this damage.
Dr. Kevin Windisch
Pediatrics 26 years experience
Yes: Hemorrhagic disease of the newborn, which vitamin k prevents is deadly and difficult to recognize till it is too late. This is something that should not be skipped under any circumstances.
Dr. Lawrence Rosen
Pediatrics 29 years experience
Yes: A vitamin k shot at birth is the only truly proven way to prevent hemorrhagic disease - a severe bleeding disorder - in the newborn period. While some european countries use oral vitamin k, studies have not conclusively shown this therapy is equivalent. Long-term safety appears to be excellent.
Dr. Richard Bensinger
Ophthalmology 53 years experience
Ask pedioatrician: Rare cases of vitamin k have been reported which is apparently due to a deficiency in the mother. The vitamin is non-toxic and if your newborn has bleeding, your first step should be to go quickly to your pediatrician for diagnosis since there are more common disorders of bleeding.
Dr. Richard Bensinger
Ophthalmology 53 years experience
Ask pediatrician: Rare cases of vitamin k have been reported which is apparently due to a deficiency in the mother. The vitamin is non-toxic and if your newborn has bleeding, your first step should be to go quickly to your pediatrician for diagnosis since there are more common disorders of bleeding.

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Last updated Feb 1, 2018

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