Doctor insights on:
Smelly Umbilical Cord Stump
Depends on situation: Since the umbilical stump is composed of arteries & a vein that fed baby during pregnancy, it acquired a significant size. As the cord stump dries & separates, there is often a bit of bleeding. Usually only enough to cover a few q-tips. Local care as you would a scratch is all that is needed unless the bleeding persists. Occasionally the pediatrician needs to cauterize a stubborn bleeder in the offic. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Some people do: Once the cord stump dries up and falls off, it's harmless and some people do keep it for a memento. What to keep in a baby box or album is a very personal decision, and also varies with culture. But dried cord stump poses no risk of carrying infections or anything bad. Also, the dried cord stump has no potential future medical use (banking cord blood is totally different process). ...Read more
My sister thinks I should keep my baby's umbilical cord stump for our baby album. Isn't that overdoing it?
Some people do: Once the cord stump dries up and falls off, it's harmless and some people do keep it for a memento. What to keep in a baby box or album is a very personal decision, and also varies with culture. If keeping the cord stump grosses you out, maybe you'd feel more comfortable with hospital id bands or other non-organic keepsakes. But dried cord stump poses no risk of carrying infections or anything bad. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
When should the umbilical cord stump fall off? My baby is 15 days old and it's still firmly attached. I'm starting to worry it won't ever fall off.
My newborn is a week and 6 days old and her umbilical cord stump fell off but at the bottom still looks open is this normal?
Call your peds: Sometimes, the umbilicus (belly button) doesn't fully heal at the base of the cord, so when the cord falls off, the baby can have something called an umbilical granuoloma - basically a non-healing wound. It's relatively common, and takes just 1 or 2 visits to the pediatrician's office to get it fixed. Make sure your infant is still eating, peeing, seeming as per her usual, 13-day self. ...Read more
Pretty quickly: I seldom use this unless I am treating an oozing remnant, but it drys the tissue it touches almost immediately. Occasionally i'll have to retreat in a day or two if they were very soupy at the start. ...Read more
Newborn is 4 days old and there is foul odor coming from umbilical cord stump but no discharge. Is this normal?
Abnormal: Foul smelling umbilical cord stump indicate bacterial growth-which is not good. This may be treated with alcohol swabbing of the stump several times a day. If it drains fluid or remains foul smelling, or the area around it turns red-a visit to the doctor is recommended. You want to avoid omphalitis. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
My newborn's umbilical cord stump just fell off. There is what looks like pus where the cord was. How should I treat this? Can I tub bathe her?
Umbilical stump: You can wash the cord area with soap and water during a tub bath and dry it up with a q-tip. You can also just wipe the umbilical stump with alcohol. Sometimes that area may not dry up quickly so your pediatrician may cauterize it with a silver nitrate stick. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Depends: Some institutions use triple dye (purple) on the cord in an effort to avoid germs. This leatherizes the stump and makes separation take longer. Occasional cleaning may be needed to remove grime and thin soapy water or alcohol are fine. If the cord is allowed to air dry, occasional alcohol wipedowns accelerate drying. Bleeding at the base is common as the stump separates. Treat like you would a cut. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Not much of a cord: During the first month there is a lot going on in development but there is not much of a cord as you may visualize it. A lot of the embryonic work goes on in a mass of tissue attached to a thick stalk. At about 30 days a crude cord is forming. The fetal cord has the ability to grow longer under tension. I've seen one 9 feet long compared to the nl 3. The only one I know snapped happened @ birth. ...Read more
Occasional care: I look at this area as if it were a healing scratch. Once the cord stump has been shed, it may or may not need any care. Keep the area dry, sometimes using alcohol as a drying agent, and washing as you would any other scratch will promote healing. If it oozes or drains after a week or more I would call the office. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
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