Skip that Newborn Vitamin K Shot

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist March 15, 2010

One of the very first things on a doctor or midwife’s to do list after the birth of your baby is an injection of vitamin K. The purpose of this shot is to assist the newborn with blood clotting capabilities in order to prevent the very rare and slow problem of bleeding into the brain in the weeks after birth (risk in about one in every 10,000 live births).

The shot also is a supposed safeguard in case your car is involved in a car wreck on the way home from the hospital or birthing center with newborn in tow. Even a mild injury to a newborn could be life threatening if blood clotting capability is not adequate.

 
At first blush, allowing the vitamin K shot seems to be a no brainer. Safety of this precious, helpless little being is of paramount importance and questioning the necessity of this shot seems ludicrous. Since questioning the unquestionable is something I seem to have a knack for, let’s have at it. Is the vitamin K shot really of any value?
 
Let’s start with the vitamin K used in the shot itself. Is it a natural form of vitamin K such as would be found in leafy greens (K1) or butter (K2)? No, it is a synthetic vitamin K – generic name phytonadione. Synthetic vitamins should be avoided as they can cause imbalances in the body and have unintended consequences. For example, synthetic vitamin A actually causes the type of birth defects that natural vitamin A prevents!
 
How much synthetic vitamin K is in the shot? Shockingly, the national standard mandated by most states for US hospitals to administer is over 100 times the infant’s RDA of this nutrient. Since studies have linked large doses of vitamin K with childhood cancers and leukemia, this large dose of synthetic K administered within minutes of birth seems questionable at best.
 
The fact is that medical science still does not know that much about the metabolic fate of vitamin K. Little to no unmetabolized vitamin K shows up in urine or bile. This is disturbing given the fact that vitamin K is a fat soluble vitamin and therefore has the potential to accumulate in body tissues. More disturbing is that the liver of a newborn does not begin to function until 3 or 4 days after birth. As a result, this little being has very limited to no ability to detoxify the large dose of synthetic vitamin K and all other the dangerous ingredients in the injection cocktail including:
 
- Phenol (carbolic acid – a poisonous substance derived from coal tar)
- Benzyl alcohol (preservative)
- Propylene glycol (better known as antifreeze and a hydraulic in brake fluid)
- Acetic acid (astringent, antimicrobial agent)
- Hydrochloric acid
- Lecithin
- Castor oil
 
The manufacturer’s insert included with the shot includes the following warning, “Severe reactions, including fatalities, have occurred during and immediately after intravenous injection of phytonadione even when precautions have been taken to dilute the vitamin and avoid rapid infusion …”
 
If that isn’t enough to scare you, Midwifery Digest, Vol 2 #3, September 1992 estimated that the chance of your child developing leukemia from the vitamin K shot is about one in 500! This means that the risk of developing leukemia from the vitamin K shot is much higher than the risk of bleeding on the brain which the vitamin K shot is supposed to prevent!
 
Does any of this make any sense to you? It makes absolutely no sense to me. How could anyone say that this shot is safe and effective for newborns?

Safe Alternatives to the Synthetic Vitamin K Shot

How about this for an alternative – eat lots of leafy greens in the weeks before your due date (I drank a cup or two of nettle tea every day in the final weeks which is loaded with vitamin K1) to make sure your blood is high in vitamin K and of course, this will transfer to your baby as well. Does vitamin K pass the placenta? It most certainly does as do all the fat soluble vitamins (source).

Another important point is to make sure you breastfeed your child as the probiotics in breastmilk will seed your baby’s digestive tract with the right type of good bacteria which will produce naturally occurring vitamin K immediately after birth.

Skip the shot, eat your greens, and breastfeed. Now, THAT makes some sense.

Update: On October 17, 2013, a case of anaphylactic shock in a newborn from the synthetic vitamin K shot was reported making the possibility of death from this shot a a very real side effect (source).

Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

 

Comments (262)

  1. Hi, Sarah. I have a question about Vit K in oral form. Is it less dangerous than the shot? They never told me they will give my baby Vit K, I understood it only afterwards reading the papers after we checked out from the hospital. So, I have been reading the oral is far less dangerous than the shot, because the baby takes most of it out with the poop. Is this so? My baby was given 2 mg after birth and 2 mg on the 4th day, I never gave her the other 2 mg they advised I do on the 30th day… Is this too much? Please share how to detox after Vit k. She is two months old now. Thank you very much.

    Reply
  2. hi thanks for providing such useful information:) having been enlightened of late on just how bad things are in regard to the dangers of the system and all the blind trust we have in them we are like animals lead to the slaughter i have started looking in to the real dangers that are unfolding upon us – smart meters, wi fi chem trails the toxic chemicals in our food prescribed drugs medicines etc immunization vaccines it is mindblowing:( I have three children, my partner were very misinformed with the vit k shots at birth and in reading this feel so angry and like i have let my beautiful children down knowing the toxic poisens they have been subjected to…We have chosen not to allow any other immunization but the birth and fear they provoke with the possibility of bleeding on the brain we did weaken to. Is there any thing we can do to eliminate these toxic/poisons form them now as i know they will still very much be present. My children have had terrible trouble with their immunity and fighting off illness. Any suggestions on possible detox?? Would be greatly appriciated Thanks so much:) – Nicole

    Reply
  3. I have no position on this matter. I do, however, advocate for good science and statistics.

    Vitamin K shot causes leukemia in 1 in 500 babies? That means 8000 children per year develop leukemia in the US. That doesn’t pass the sniff test.

    BTW – acetic acid is more commonly known as vinegar.

    Reply
  4. Pingback: Babies Are Getting Brain Bleeds—Are Vaccine Fears to Blame? | Mother Jones

  5. Dear Heather,I’m a frequent reader of yours and enjoy your insights. However, I’m wondering if you’d consider revisiting and perhaps, revising, this post in light of the massive evidence published recently by evidencebasedbirth.com on the subject? It may be that parents will still choose to decline, but at least we are making the most informed choices when we look at all the evidence yes? That’s the goal. I believe she is alluding to this very blog post in the article so I think it’s worth looking at.

    http://evidencebasedbirth.com/evidence-for-the-vitamin-k-shot-in-newborns/

    Reply
  6. Eating greens is not shown to increase a baby’s Vit K level and breast milk is too low in it to raise that level fast enough to help in time, if your babe has VKDB. Look to SCIENCE first. I support choice and believe that risk assessment is a very personal thing, but I also believe INFORMED consent means you bear the burden of educating yourself on the issue with evidence-based research.

    http://evidencebasedbirth.com/evidence-for-the-vitamin-k-shot-in-newborns/

    http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/separating-fact-from-fiction-in-the-not-so-normal-newborn-nursery-vitamin-k-shots/

    Reply
    • read 2 comments down, Lauras comment is the perfect example of Manufactured Consent, informed consent should involve the medical professionals informing the parents about both positive and negative side effects in and objective manner.

      Reply
  7. I know that nettle is high in vitamin K but is the tea? Vitamin K is a fat soluble vitamin and i thought these needed to be infused in oil rather than water to be extracted. Would love to know if you have any further info on this? Thanks

    Reply
  8. I’m pretty flippin’ pissed that the ped that came to check on my newborn scared me into getting this shot for my baby girl, when I had originally planned on not giving it to her. She told me, “I have never in my career ever heard a parent refuse this shot,” which I’m sure was a bag of BS, and continued to guilt me into thinking I was saving my child. But that scared me enough. My daughter has only received that shot, and a roto oral, which she vomited up anyways. So I like to think she has only ever had the vit K shot…

    ugh

    Reply
  9. I really appreciate you addressing the risk factors associated with vit k. But I think it would serve your credibility well to address on the main article (as you did in a comment) that the link with leukaemia is, we’ll, that there isn’t one…at least there isn’t an established one. As well, I completely agree with you that it isn’t necessary MOST of the time and that there are, most likely, health problems related to the shot that we just don’t know about, haven’t been discovered. Still, after reading the comments I am going to give my baby (due soon) the shot. Unlike vaccines, which I will not give, I believe the benefits do outweigh the risks. Certainly your article makes many good points & I do certainly wish more research would be done regarding the shot…but ultimately I think yes, the benefits outweigh the risks. You write as though there are none. And clearly based on the comments there are risks. Ultimately we may find pit the benefits don’t outweigh the risks. But at this point I don’t believe that can be said for certain.

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  10. Thank you for the information.
    I was already suspicious of this shot and i am totally opposed to Vaccines due to months of my own research. I have read about the link to childhood leukemia with the vitamine k shot, where there is smoke there is fire. I do not trust the drug companies they are poisoning people and harming babies. The united states has one of the biggest mortality rates in infants before they turn one due to all the poisons in thier inaffective vaccines. Our vaccines in Australia come from America. The only shot my child will recieve is a shot at the future. Thank you for standing up and fighting for the truth rather than drug company endorsed propaganda.

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  11. There seems to be a double edged sword on this topic. Healthy Home Economist, I enjoy reading your articles and watching your Youtube videos. However, I have done a lot of research on the Vitamin K1 shot and some of the ingredients you listed I have not found in any research. No where have I found that propylene glycol, acetic acid, lecithin, castor oil and phenol is an ingredient in the shot. The shot may contain hydrochloric acid for PH adjustment. Otherwise, I found it contains phytonadione, polyoxyethylated fatty acid derivative, dextrose, hydrous in water, and benzyl alcohol. Yes those other ingredients I listed are indeed questionable too. My source of information comes from dailymed.nlm.nih.gov. I am curious as to where you got the sources regarding the ingredients I have not found and where your sources got their references from. I have however, found a study done by the University of Maryland that vitamin K does cross the placenta since it is fat soluble and that is in breast milk, but there may not be enough to prevent this deficiency. We can say to women to eat their leafy greens, but it all goes back to the source, how much of the nutrient will be left in that food. If women shop at the store for their food, what has to be taken into consideration is where that vegetable came from, how long ago it was picked and shipped in a truck and the amount of time it sat in the supermarket. No one really knows how many nutrients are in their fruits and vegetables (even if it’s organic or bought from a farm directly) unless they grow it themselves. I have also looked at information regarding oral vitamin K drops, but again with no regulation on the manufacturing of vitamins, how much are you really getting and how effective is it. There are a lot of variables to take into consideration. Also, the shot is administered not just to safeguard from head trauma or trauma from a car accident, but for any bleeding within the first few months of an infant’s life. That includes bleeding from mucosal tissues (nose, throat, intestines, uterus, and urethra), bleeding at the circumcision site, the umbilical stump, as well as the brain and this can occur spontaneously. I have also found no credited study anywhere that states vitamin K1 injection can result in leukemia.

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  12. What I don’t get is how our society’s common sense has so easily been overpowered by big pharma – I mean, come on. How could the species survive for so many millennia, a woman’s body engineered to give birth, a baby’s body engineered to benefit from the close mother-baby dyad, and yet we think we need to inject all the babies with umpteen shots of this and that to save their lives… because obviously our bodies don’t really work??? I did not inject my baby with anything at all, ever. She’s great. All the babies and children I know who have followed the same philosophy are thriving! Why inject a bunch of chemicals into the blood of our just-arrived precious beings just because maybe maybe something bad could possibly happen… the chemical injection is a guaranteed bad thing happening. I just don’t get it. And I am a highly educated, well-read and researched parent. I am not on the “natural parenting” bandwagon because I’m trying to be cool or alternative. I think we should stop letting pharmaceuticals and doctors in their pocket tell us how to care for our babies, mamas!

    Reply
    • Yes our species has survived for thousands of years, but what was the mortality rate, both infant and adult, before all of these so called evil people – pharmaceutical companies, came around. Yes your child might be ok and the few people you know might be ok as well. There are also the billions of people that have received the shot and are ok as well. It is all percentages. There is a percent chance your kid will die without the vitamin k shot and there is a percent chance your kid will survive without it. If you are a good parent then you would not want to gamble with your child’s life. I would hope you would want to increase their chances of surviving at all costs. Especially with a vitamin k shot when over the past 50 years the USA has been giving the shots, there has been no proven side effects of the medicine other than allergic reactions.

      Stop gambling with your children’s lives.

      Reply
      • Common Sense Susan June 16, 2014 at 11:21 am

        What an ill-informed, scared little sheep. Big pharma doesn’t need to advertise when they’ve got people like you to scare the public. Do some research and then come back – only then can you hold an equal conversation with anybody with an IQ higher than 90.

        Reply
        • I’ve done the research, and even evidence based birth has done a recent article about the very real dangers of not getting a vitamin k shot. I assure you, my IQ is far higher than 90, and I can converse without being absurdly emotional.

          Reply
      • .7-1.5% chance the kid will die without vitamin k shot. What is the mortality rate with vitamin k or chance of neurological problems associated. They don’t tell everybody about those before stabbing their children with vitamin k and all the mystery ingredients. Nothing proven? Well, hmm why would they try to prove themselve$ wrong? Why would they want you to know what they really know? LIke the truth?

        Reply
    • Heather,
      I get it. I know it’s hard to trust the large corporations. I know there are times when the government agencies have let us down. I really do get it. But get to know me.
      I had two natural deliveries with no medications. But I made sure my children got their Vitamin K shots, erythromycin in the eyes and, you know, they were also fine- in fact, they’ve been fine for 30 and 33 years.
      I also breastfed exclusively for the first six months and didn’t stop entirely until they became uninterested. I kept my diet and their diets as healthy as possible while living in the city. And I gave them all of the recommended vaccines and they’re still fine.
      When we talk about our own personal experiences as if they prove something, we ignore all of the research that has been done to help us live longer, healthier lives. We are merely celebrating our own good fortune and ignoring the profoundly bad luck of other parents and their children. I read the stories above of the parents and children who were not so lucky as we have been. Did you read them? They are heartbreaking. These parents have amazing strength and are trying to save others from what they and their children have been through. Please do not ignore their stories. Their stories are just as valid as ours.
      Yes, we need to trust our bodies to do what they know how to do best. But sometimes our bodies can use some help. Women still die in natural childbirth all over the world. People still die from preventable illnesses all the time. All the damn time. It makes me crazy. Especially when it’s available to them and they make decisions based on fear. I hear so much fear and distrust in the comments of so many of the parents posting here. I understand.
      But please make sure that in looking for answers to your concerns, you don’t ignore the science that lead up to these solutions. People dedicate their lives to the research of illness and the production of medications, procedures, and treatments. Trust me, most of them do it because they care about humanity- not just their own child and alleviating their own fears- they study and work and sacrifice to make this world a better place. Large corporations do sometimes step in and muddy the waters. Sadly, that’s very true. I get it.
      And so, I continue to encourage parents to give their children their vaccinations, and their vitamin K shots and so many other things that, after years of studying and working and sacrificing and NOT getting rich, I have determined to be what is best for them. I am highly-educated in this particular area. You don’t have to believe me and you don’t have to do what I my careful research and consideration and experience have led me to recommend to you. And I will still be here for you when your child does get sick and need me. It’s what I do.

      Reply
  13. I really enjoy how your disclaimer to this website states:

    “The information on The Healthy Home Economist â„¢ is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended to substitute for the advice provided by your doctor or other health care professional. You should not rely upon or follow the programs or techniques or use any of the products and services made available by or through the use of this website for decision making without obtaining the advice of a physician or other health care professional. The nutritional and other information on this website are not intended to be and do not constitute health care or medical advice”

    even though you try to give out medical advice that is against best practice medicine and will be harmful to some people that are gullible enough to believe the lies stated in blog.

    Reply
  14. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported in the Nov. 15 issue of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report that four confirmed cases of late vitamin K deficient bleeding were diagnosed at a children’s hospital in Nashville, Tenn from Feb. to Sept. 2013. All four infants were not given a vitamin K shot due to their parental refusals

    Maybe you can understand what that sentence says with your UPenn education.

    Reply
    • Common Sense Susan June 16, 2014 at 11:29 am

      Because, of course, the CDC and other GOs and NGOs have never fudged the figures to make a profit. Carry on in your own world but don’t attack other people for living in theirs. I would be willing to bet that all those out there screaming that the Vit K is completely safe haven’t even bothered to research the other side. There are so many studies linking child vaccinations to problems with neural development – but will you read the studies or watch the videos? No. And do you know why? Because nobody with any authority told you to. Which takes me back to my original point… authorities never, ever lie.

      Reply
  15. I have some news:
    Jesus was born in a manger not even a mention of a midwife.
    He had no vaccines, no vitamin K.
    He survived as did billions of other people. Those meant to live will live. Trust God and stop relying so much on fallen man. If you wanna vaccinate and give K shot, pray for health, if you don’t–pray for health. Nothing is guaranteed and no one really knows, apparently. trust God and accept what comes. God designed the body and birth; He knows what he is doing. Either way, you will always worry so just pray and trust God to lead you to the right decision. Have faith!

    Reply
    • Not true. Nettle tea can be used as a gentle uterine tonic to support the birthing process (works well with raspberry leaf, the most recommended) and is often recommended as an excellent source of iron for pregnant and nursing mothers, but will not induce labor.

      Reply
  16. Pingback: Skip that Newborn Vitamin K Shot - Nardi Specific Chiropractic Center

  17. With oral vit. K doses available as a safer alternative, and knowing the risks of injections (adjuvants, autoimmune diseases, anaphilaxis, etc.) I totally don’t understand this injection craze. It must be a iatrogenic strategy to ensure a constant flow of patients in the future.

    Reply
  18. So this goes for the oral vitamin K neonatal as well then correct?
    1st child. Got the shot.
    2nd chld. We got the oral as the shot contains contaminants.
    This is so frustrating this was only 6 weeks ago. I wish I would have seen this before the birth. Thank you for the article.

    Reply
  19. The only problem with this information is that the statement that this shot is giving intraveneously is totally incorrect. It is given as an IM (in the muscle) injection to prevent again IV toxicity.

    Reply
  20. Pingback: What happens right after you have a baby (& what to pack for the hospital) | Strength by Sara

  21. This article is scary and dangerous. I can’t believe you allow it to continue it’s existence on your website, even after all of these comments. I can’t believe you don’t respond to these parents. You should be ashamed of yourself. God help the people following your advice. Go get some education and start again.
    Jen\’s last post: The Power of Touch

    Reply
    • I trust my very natural doctor…who has refused all vaccinations for her own child, as well as vit k, because of contradictions she read, and very importantly, witnessed, for herself in med school. I trust myself and my own research too. Why should she respond to negative comments…like yours? She should be ashamed of encouraging parents to question everything? Isn’t that our job? To EDUCATE ourselves? Not, my dear, bully others online.

      Sincerely, a Harvard Grad with a Masters Degree who has done a fair amount of intensive research in her day and can analyze studies with the best of ‘em.

      Reply
  22. Sarah,

    Several of us have commented on this article about our children who suffered brain bleeds as a result of the Vitamin K Deficiency. You have not responded to any of us in the comments. We have lived the very nightmare that the Vitamin K shot is meant to prevent. How many more children will suffer brain damage or die due to your horrible advice? What will it take for you to change your attitude about this?

    You say, “Vitamin K and all the fat soluble vitamins pass the placenta so consuming nettle tea and other leafy greens would help the baby clot naturally after birth without that nasty, synthetic vitamin K shot. Low vitamin K is only a concern for a preemie who would have lower fat stores.”

    It’s preposterous! I couldn’t have eaten any better before or after birth! It was not enough for my baby boy, who was born perfectly healthy at FULL TERM.

    What is your response to those of us who ate the Vit K rich foods, who declined the shot, who breastfed, and who were told that our sons were bleeding into their brains despite our best efforts to do what we thought was best for them?

    You think you know about this. You have no idea. Because you haven’t been there in person to see your 3 week old baby seize because his blood is as thin as water and leaking into his brain. You feel sorry for that poor baby that died from anaphylactic shock after receiving Vit K last October. Well that’s convenient for your argument. You even linked to it at the end of your blog. But what about those of us who have been telling you over and over again about our children who almost died from NOT getting the shot, and then were saved by it? What about our children who suffered brain damage from all the blood that made parts of their brains die? What about the children who have to take anti-seizure meds long-term, or have hydrocephalus shunts put in? All because they didn’t have Vitamin K at birth!

    What do you have to say to us? How long will you withhold this valuable information from your readers? They are looking to you for answers but you are not giving them the full story- you are not giving them our stories.

    How long will you disregard what we say? Do you not care? Or do you not believe us? I know it’s not all that convenient for your argument. Really and truly, I do want your opinion/theory on what happened to our children.

    I know you’re a high-powered blogger with lots of opinions that people flock to listen to, but in the medical world it’s best to look at every side of the story. Are you willing to do that? You obviously don’t understand how dangerous your public stance on the Vitamin K shot is. We have given you the facts but you have refused to give them to your audience. Shame on you. What are you going to do about it?

    Kendall Anderson

    Reply
    • Bullshit. Our child got vitamin K, i.m., got a sort of dermatitis, pulmonary arrest, and epileptic seizures the very first day. Was on Keppra and Phenobarbiton from day one and two. Was in coma for over a week, he barely made it alive.

      Reply
  23. Unless you are a doctor, biologist, chemist, or other authoritative source you should not be spreading around your opinion on shots without having scientific proof to back it up. This information could cause a lot of unnecessary suffering for people who take your opinion as fact.

    Reply
    • only doctors, biologists, chemists, or other authoritative sources should be spreading opinions? Scary world. Wouldn’t want to live there.

      Reply
  24. I wished I knew this before my son was born. At the time I was so focused to research about vaccines that somehow I missed the information about vit K shot. At the hospital the nurse told us : “Oh it’s just vit K “. Later I found out about all the other ingredients and what it can cause. My son is completely vax-free but due to the vit K shot , developed eczema at the third day after he was born. For my daughter I already knew what to do. First , she was delivered at home with a midwife . We weren’t pressured to anything and she never ever had any skin issues . Both of my kids are extremely healthy overall.

    Reply
  25. I’m a pediatrician, and i encourage you to continue reading in spite of that fact, should that tend to dissuade you.

    The vitamin K you ingest in you leafy green veggies (which I do encourage you eat regardless) DO NOT CROSS THE PLACENTA in any more than trace amounts, and therefore do nothing to prevent vitamin K related hemorrhagic processes. Studies have been done that show no significant difference in neonatal vitamin K levels compared to maternal vitamin K ingestion prior to delivery. That is why we have to give it to the baby after birth, as the baby has no known way in utero to build up the vitamin K it needs should it be at risk for hemorrhage. Babies are born with minimal vitamin K levels and 50% of adult levels of vitamin K dependent coagulation factors.

    Look into Australia’s experience with Vitamin K injections. The tried several alternative approaches to high dose vitamin K injections, all of which resulted in case fatalities of hemorrhagic disease that the injection would have prevented. They tried risk stratification, only giving the shot to people with certain risk factors. The risk factor profiles turned out to be inadequate to prevent deaths. They also tried single and multiple doses of oral vitamin K in the newborn period. This reduced, but did not eliminate deaths from hemorrhagic disease. Only when they returned to universal vitamin K injection did the hemorrhagic disease cases disappear, except in infants who’s parents continued to refuse the injection.

    Breastfeeding and probiotics do help infants build up vitamin K levels after birth, but they are still at risk for several weeks/months before adequate levels of vitamin K build up to prevent hemorrhage. this risk is not just in neonates, but has been known to occur out to 2-3 months of age.

    I concur with at least one prior poster that the link between vitamin K injections and leukemia has never been replicated by any subsequent studies and this study is quite out of date. No prospective controlled random placebo trials have ever shown a increase in childhood cancer and vitamin K levels regardless of route (oral or injection). This is just plain BAD DATA. Google it, look at the actual studies, look at the recent studies, look for prospective case controlled studies, no retrospective chart review studies.

    I directly and indirectly was privy to 3 separate cases of vitamin K deficient hemorrhagic disease that cause hospitalization and use of blood products to save the life of the baby while in my 3 YEAR residency at The Cleveland Clinic, and that’s just my personal experience in a population where 99% of the babies received the injection. All 3 cases were in vitamin K refusers. thankfully all 3 survived, but one of the almost died and 2 of them were left debilitated after suffering hemorrhage into the brain (a stroke). They were all exposed to multiple blood products, putting them at risk for numerous viral diseases like HIV and hepatitis B/C and who knows what we can’t detect yet. I never heard of a case of leukemia that any of my hematology professors ever attributed to vitamin K

    A study from the UK on the vitamin K-leukemia issue:
    “Vitamin K and childhood cancer: a report from the United Kingdom Childhood Cancer Study.
    Fear NT, Roman E, Ansell P, Simpson J, Day N, Eden OB; United Kingdom Childhood Cancer Study.
    Author information

    Abstract
    The relationship between neonatal vitamin K received by the intramuscular (i.m.) route and the development of leukaemia or other cancers was investigated as part of a national case-control study of childhood cancer, using data abstracted from obstetric and neonatal records. The analyses included 2530 children diagnosed with cancer before 15 years of age, 1174 of whom had leukaemia and 4487 control children without cancer. Overall, 39% of cases and 42% of controls had records of i.m. vitamin K administration, while 24% of cases and 22% of controls had no record of whether or not they had received vitamin K. Using subjects who received i.m. vitamin K as the baseline group, our analyses found no association between the administration of i.m. vitamin K and either leukaemia or other cancers as a group. We conclude that there is no convincing evidence that neonatal vitamin K administration, irrespective of the route by which it is given, influences the risk of children developing leukaemia or any other cancer.”

    There are many other such studies, making the 1 in 500 risk of cancer from vitamin K shot a number made up of whole cloth.

    From betterhealth.gov, based on numerous studies on the physiology of the placenta and how various vitamins cross it.

    “Babies have very little vitamin K in their bodies at birth. Vitamin K does not cross the placenta to the developing baby, and the gut does not have any bacteria to make vitamin K before birth. After birth, there is little vitamin K in breast milk and breastfed babies can be low in vitamin K for several weeks until the normal gut bacteria start making it. Infant formula has added vitamin K, but even formula-fed babies have very low levels of vitamin K for several days.”

    I could go on, but you can find all this on the internet. check the medical journals, not blogs.

    On the other “toxic products” in the vitamin K shot. those are called PRESERVATIVES and are in innumerable products you consume every day, you body make some of them naturally (hydrochloric acid anyone?), they must be used so that bacteria and other nasty things don’t contaminate the injection. This is routine and safe. I won’t address that further because if you’re more afraid of preservative than you are of E. Coli, I will fail to convince you much else today.

    Give your baby the vitamin K shot. We don’t do these things to you infant lightly or without significant forethought and data to back it up. Consider that most hospitals will have you sign a waiver of responsibility if you refuse the vitamin K shot so that you can’t hold the hospital or the physicians/nurses liable if your baby dies or is injured from vitamin K dependent hemorrhagic episodes. Why do they do that do you think? because we secretly know that vitamin K is harmful but do it anyway to spite homeopaths?

    Think before you act. study the actual data. look for sources. Make the right choice. Thank you for your time.

    Reply
      • I don’t know what you know or don’t know, i only know what you post. I’m not being arrogant, or claiming to know more about this than you, by posting data that refutes what you claim. You for whatever reason choose to ignore or at least choose not reference large volumes of data that refute your claims. You cherry pick things that sound like they support your claims, but often closer inspection of your sources find your conclusions of them thin or lacking. I’m curious as to why you do that.

        I wanted people to both know my background, and not be turned off by it. I find it unfortunate that, by virtue of my pediatric training alone, I would immediately be made suspect. What is important is not my credentials or how much more or less I know than you, but what the data actually has to say on any given topic. I just ask you to continue to review current studies and data in total since may people turn to your website for advice and council. I also don’t think that everything you post is wrong or bad or crazy, in fact I think a lot of what I’ve seen on your site is great. But THIS topic…on this topic you are putting people in clear and present danger. I also continue to be curious as to your thoughts on all the posters here who have devastated babies from not getting the Vitamin K shot.

        I have no interest in being snarky or arrogant to you or anyone else, but I do have a sense of humor ;) My goal is to convert you on this topic so you stop putting people at needless risk, but I don’t think I’m any better or smarter than you.

        Reply
      • “Abstract

        A pregnant woman who has adequate nutrition available in the form of a standard diet will provide the vitamins required by the fetus for normal development. Active transport of the water-soluble vitamins plus easy oral absorption after birth insure nutritional sufficiency at any gestational age. The fat-soluble vitamins which have a much slower transfer rate as the result of facilitated diffusion do not achieve the same degree of storage in the developing fetus. Thus, the premature infant who has decreased stores and who may have impaired oral absorption initially may become deficient in a fat-soluble vitamin (A, D, E, K) during the first 4 to 6 weeks of life. Oral or possibly parenteral supplementation following birth, however, would seem more appropriate than subtoxic doses administered to the mother prenatally.”

        - I believe this says that in utero the mother provides the correct amount of nutrition, that fat soluble vitamins cross the placenta poorly, that giving mother prenatally high doses of such vitamins can be dangerous.
        - This article is also from 1975 so I’m not sure why you continually refer to such out dated information

        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18677590
        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18982351
        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18804903

        Reply
      • “Abstract

        A pregnant woman who has adequate nutrition available in the form of a standard diet will provide the vitamins required by the fetus for normal development. Active transport of the water-soluble vitamins plus easy oral absorption after birth insure nutritional sufficiency at any gestational age. The fat-soluble vitamins which have a much slower transfer rate as the result of facilitated diffusion do not achieve the same degree of storage in the developing fetus. Thus, the premature infant who has decreased stores and who may have impaired oral absorption initially may become deficient in a fat-soluble vitamin (A, D, E, K) during the first 4 to 6 weeks of life. Oral or possibly parenteral supplementation following birth, however, would seem more appropriate than subtoxic doses administered to the mother prenatally.”

        - I believe this article says that mothers provide adequate nutrition to baby in utero, that fat soluble vitamins cross the placenta poorly and that giving mother prenatal doses of vitamins can be dangerous
        - its also from 1975, there are much more recent articles

        Reply
  26. Great article. I agree with you on all counts except for the eating leafy greens before birth to transfer Vitamin K. Don’t get me wrong: Leafy greens, green juice, green smoothies, etc are great for the mom! However, the placenta limits how much vitamin K can pass to the baby before birth. No matter how much vitamin K mom takes in BEFORE birth, it isn’t going to raise a pre-born baby’s vitamin K level.

    AFTER birth, however, is a whole different story. You can pass Vitamin K on to your baby through breast milk, although the amount is reduced. Mom could take in large quantities of Vitamin K but will only pass small amounts to baby via breast milk. Which is great – I don’ think babies need a dose in excess of 100 times the RDA – breast milk does not need to compete with the shot, it just needs to do an adequate job protecting the baby. I think our bodies have wisdom beyond the medical establishment – I don’t think it coincidental that the placenta will prevent Vit K transmission or that breast milk will only transmit small amounts of vitamin K at a time.
    Carissa Bonham\’s last post: De-Clutter Challenge: How to Organize Under the Kitchen Sink

    Reply
      • you are mis-stating what that abstract says. The abstract addresses premature infants, but note that it does NOT state that low vitamin K “is only a concern for a premie who would have lower fat stores”. It just doesn’t say that at all. That abstract doesn’t speak to full term infants. You can’t just say that it does. You assumed that by omission it says full term infants are ok, but it doesn’t say that, and of course we see VKDH in full term babies Vitamin K is the hardest vitamin to get across the placenta and this is well known. Babies are also born with about half the normal adult levels of the vitamin K dependent clotting factors which makes the vitamin K we give at birth even more important. Be careful that you’re interpreting what studies actually say and not what you want them to say.

        Reply
  27. That’s some nice sources you’ve cited there… is what I would say if you did. Show me some peer-reviewed scientific journal articles that conclusively prove this, and I’ll see your side. If you don’t, stop spouting damaging, dangerous lies in the form of advice.

    Reply
          • The issue is “is giving the shot SAFER than not giving the shot”. You are not doing nothing by not giving the shot. You’re choosing a course of action that is associated with known risks. 400 hemorrhages a year avoided vs 1 anaphylactic shock episode sounds like a fair trade, given that nothing in life is risk free. Address the risks of not getting the vitamin K shot somewhere.

            Also, even Dr. Mercola (who’s own anti-vitamin K shot article googles ahead of yours) has posted the lack of a link between vitamin K and leukemia on his site.

  28. Thank you for anyy other fantastic post. The place else mayy just
    anyone get that type of information in such a perfect method of writing?
    I’ve a presentation subsequent week, and I’m at the search for such info.
    Cialis\’s last post: Cialis

    Reply
  29. This article may be responsible for actual deaths. It’s too bad that it was so wrong. The leukemia connection was never proven, infact it was proven false! This is something so simple that can save a life or morbidity. Their blood is on this author’s hands. What a joke just to try and get hits. If anything certain parts of the internet are throwing us back in time.

    Reply
  30. Pingback: Why are parents refusing the Vitamin K shot for their babies? | So much science, so little time

  31. Pingback: I presume decent sanitation will be the next thing they go after | Ordinary Times

  32. I have been a baby nurse for over 20 years. Almost all of the thousands of newborns I have cared for at birth recieve Vit. K. They do not typically scream and turn purple. They may cry for a minute…the vitamin going into their muscle (not vein) does cause a bit of a sting. Many do not cry at all, especially if given while nursing. Vit. K DOES NOT cross the placenta. MANY things don’t cross the placenta, but MANY things do. Breastfed babies have LOWER Vit. K than formula fed. Here is an EVIDENCED based article (all medical care today is EVIDENCED based) from the American Academy of Pediatrics, which states, in part,

    “The efficacy of neonatal vitamin K prophylaxis (oral or parenteral) in the prevention of early VKDB is firmly established. It has been the standard of care since the American Academy of Pediatrics recommended it in 1961.”
    http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/112/1/191.full (copy and paste to read full article)

    I had parents decline vit. K just this week. I brought in the paperwork they must sign to refuse routine medical care. The mother (college-educated woman) read the release and asked me what the risks were. She mentioned that the baby was a girl, so didn’t need Vit. K from what she had read on the internet (it’s all true stuff…isn’t it?). Anyway, I mentioned that the baby could suffer from a brain bleed. She was horrified! Told me no one had told her that. She looked at her husband, they both nodded, and asked me to give the injection. INFORM yourself with EVIDENCED-BASED information, not information from some angry mommy blogger.

    And, if you come to the hospital to have your baby…let us do our jobs! You can decline medication for yourself, you can hold your baby skin to skin for as long as you want to (evidence shows this is VERY important) unless something is wrong with the baby (then for God’s sake, give it to the NICU nurse), you hopefully will breastfeed, because EVIDENCE shows that this is overwhelmingly the best way to feed your baby, but if your baby has a low glucose level, or is becoming very jaundiced, or is not wetting at least one-two diapers a day and is showing other signs of dehydration, FEED it! You can still breastfeed! But, your baby needs quantity (from formula) over quality (breastmilk) on some occasions, for medical reasons.

    If your water breaks, come to the hospital to get antibiotics if you need them (GBS), I have seen beautiful babies die from GBS meningitis. Let us do our jobs. We love babies, we love the birth process, and we want to help you. Yes, birth is natural…but just take a look at the statistics from a third world country to know that it isn’t always a great outcome. For example, Somalia, the death rate for newborns is 102 per 1,000. (http://kff.org/global-indicator/infant-mortality-rate/).

    Oh, mother’s die too! Look at the maternal death rate in Somalia…1,000 per 100,000!! (http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SH.STA.MMRT).

    See…I use sources, so you know this isn’t my opinion….

    Reply
  33. Pingback: Skip that Newborn Vitamin K Shot | Global Health Project

  34. Pingback: best source of vitamin k in food | A Listly List

  35. Pingback: My Natural Birth Plan | Homemaker Chic

  36. Ladies and gentlemen, women have been giving birth for thousands of years, without the aid of doctors and ob’s. Vaccines were not introduced until the late 19th, early 20th century, so how did people stay healthy? Of course, I fully expect the arguement of “Well if they had a vaccine, the black plague would have claimed far less lives than it did” and “What about H1N1? Thank god for the vaccine”. Truth be told, every vaccine, EVERY SINGLE ONE has a conglomerate of poisons and toxins, that are designed to make you sicker, keep you dependant on the medical system and not allow your body to do what God has designed it to do…HEAL ITSELF!
    Yes, Vit K is low in infants, but concider their size if you will. They are in most cases, very small human beings that have been dependant on their mother’s for survival for 9 months. Everything and I mean everything she has injested in some way made it to the infant, in the form of vitamins, minerals and perhaps, if her lifestyle was a bit rique, poisons (tobacco etc). What the medical community pushes, is that you need these insane amounts of vitamins to survive, when in truth, all you need are trace amounts, same as your baby. If the mother is wise, she will shift her diet in the weeks before delivery, whether she is breastfeeding or not, to ensure baby will have the best start possible. If she is breastfeeding, it is ignorant to believe that the baby won’t get what he/she needs from the breastmilk.
    Regardless of the arguement, for vaccinating or against, it comes down to the integrity and education of the parents. If they are foolish enough to think that somehow bypassing the immune system is somehow natural and healthy, then that shows the prowess of the public education system. (sarcasm for those that didn’t understand). But those that choose to opt out of such obviously harmful activities, are truly doing what they think is right and in the best interest of their children. Someone, explain to me how mercury is good for you? Oh, and bare in mind, it is present in ALL vaccines you give your children.

    Reply
    • Mercury was never in any vaccines. Thimerosal used to be used as a preservative (it is part ethyl mercury) but has never been used since 2001 except in a few influenza vaccines which are still multidose vials.
      It would help your credibility if you didn’t post nonsense.

      Reply
    • //Ladies and gentlemen, women have been giving birth for thousands of years, without the aid of doctors and ob’s.//

      Yeah and now why don’t you go look up the infant (AND MOTHER) mortality rate during birth. Then stop spreading out of context, irrelevant nonsense.

      Reply
  37. I have 2 girls. Only my first had the vit k shot but hasn’t had any other shots. My second has had none. What can I do to help my 3 year old to remove any of those substances in her body. I wished I had known and said no to the vit k shot but so glad she hasn’t had anything else. I do notice my 1.5 Year old has a bit stronger immune system. I had a hard time thinking the vit k shot alone could have much of an effect. We eat mostly paleo and juice a lot of fresh greens almost daily including no sugar in our diets unless its a special occasion and they may have some desert but that’s pretty much it. She has gotten a few sinus colds this year and wonder why so often for her. Maybe its just part of building immunity.

    Reply
  38. Pingback: How to Make a Baby Friendly Birth Plan | Nurse Play Love

  39. Pingback: Things to Consider When Preparing Your Birth Plan | MotherWise

  40. I recently read on US patents site the ingredients for vitamin k shots (besidescall the same toxic stuff as vaccines) …peanut oil! Thus the theory of epidemic of peanut allergies in the western world.

    Reply
  41. Thank you for your experience Kendall. I talked with one of my midwives today during an appointment and we decided to do the shot. She said sometimes you have intuition about some things and the way I was fretting over it, I should just have it done. Otherwise I’ll be worrying about it for months and that’s not healthy. In their practice, mostly home births and a handful at their birthing center, 80% of the clients have their babies get the shot. They do it in the least disruptive manner – baby is bf’ing or skin to skin with momma and things have quieted down. I feel much more at peace having made a decision on this.

    Reply
  42. Kristin,
    I was eating well and taking Juice Plus and doing Prenatal Vitamins and taking Liquid Chlorophyll. I had planned to have a natural birth (this was my second child). Unfortunately I had back labor with our son and the cord was wrapped around his neck. I tried laboring with our midwife but ended up transporting to a hospital so I could get an epidural. I think they gave me a pain med while I was waiting for the epidural. I was in labor a fairly long time (2 days) so I’m sure he was quite stressed. But there were no other complications with his birth. Cord clamping was delayed. We declined Vit K at the hospital simply because I was misinformed and he wouldn’t have gotten it had he been born with the midwife. Had I known the risk for brain hemorrhage he would have gotten the shot.
    After he was born (Dec. 3) I was eating well and exclusively breastfeeding. He was a perfectly fine little baby until his cord stump fell off day 16 and bled a little more each day for a week. He showed signs of pneumonia Christmas night and the next morning began having seizures in the hematologist’s office (we were trying to figure out why the umbilicus wouldn’t stop bleeding after silver nitrate was applied, so he was going to have his blood tested that day), and they very quickly did a CT in the ER downstairs and found the hemorrhage in his brain. His blood was like water. It was Late Onset VKDB. The drops have not been proven to be effective with Late Onset VKDB so I have strong feelings about the shot.
    The umbilicus bleed and his fussiness were my only clues that something was wrong. The neurosurgeon said that when the blood is that thin it is extremely easy for the brain to begin bleeding because the newborn’s vessels are fragile. The shot is absolutely a MUST for preemies. The doctors in the NICU actually said that of the babies that don’t get the shot, 1 in 100 will develop VKDB. The risk of developing a childhood cancer from the shot has not been proven. But there will be babies that will hemorrhage because they don’t have enough Vit K for whatever reason, and unless you know there is a genetic problem or a disease before they are born that will cause them to have trouble clotting, you don’t know if your baby is getting enough Vit K or not. I think there’s enough evidence on here now that people ought to be convinced to at least give the drops. But I would still recommend the shot.

    Reply
  43. Jenny and Krista, thanks for replying! I ended up reading through all the comments and read your stories. I’m still torn as the chance of vkdb is so low, there is still a chance of it happening. I have been looking into the drops and seeing how the risk changes with them.

    Reply
  44. Wow. Some very heated discussions over a very controversial topic. I just wanted to say, from one mother to another, that I am very grateful for blogs and posts such as yours. Most parents I know who vaccinate their children have done no research at all, and it is just refreshing, no matter what your opinion is, to see people doing the leg work and questioning their practitioners and ultimately the pharmaceutical industries. Thanks and nice work!

    Reply
  45. You are very welcome to ask without feeling snotty. I applaud you for searching out all your options. For me personally, the vkdb occurred with my 6th child. All of my births were unmediated and smooth – 5 at home. This one was one of my smoothest in fact, and one of the many reasons we declined the shot. We also delayed cord clamping, in racking my brain trying to find answers the only thing that put me at risk was breast feeding. (And I have a good diet of leafy greens). I can’t explain or know how my little one ended up with vkdb. But it has certainly changed my opinion of the shot.

    Reply
  46. Hi Sarah! I just wanted to see what you had to say about the vit k shot. We are going to a birthing center run by midwives. I’m in Iowa and it’s required that we read a two page disclosure on the dangers of not getting the vit k shot and then sign off saying we do not want it administered due to religious beliefs.

    What scared me was that the form says breastfed babies are at a higher risk because they would not be receiving vit k from the shot or formula… But at the same time, the risk decreases when a birth is smooth and uncomplicated.

    I wanted to know how I personally could decrease the risk for baby. Right now I’m drinking a quart Traditional Medicinal’s Pregnancy Tea daily which has nettles in it. Thanks for the advice :)

    Reply
    • I also want to add that we are planning delayed cord clamping. I’m interested to hear from the parents whose children ended up with VKDB – were your births un-medicated and smooth? Did you delay clamping? I don’t mean this to come across as snotty, I was just curious. I know it’s natural for us to blame the most obvious thing before looking at ourselves.

      Reply
      • Hi Kristin,

        My son had a VKDB at 5 weeks of age. He now has massive brain damage and at 8 years old is still much like an infant. My son was born at home in a water tub. It was an un-medicated peaceful birth. We did do the delayed cord clamping. I had a pretty healthy diet including lots of vitamin K foods.

        Breast fed baby boys are at highest risk. If you decide not to do the shot please at least do the drops, even though they are not as effective. Also watch for any signs of bleeding or bruising. Your child may not show any signs until damage has already occurred in his/her brain. I am not trying to scare you, I just don’t want another family to endure the hardships and pain that we have. Having a child hurt so bad is unimaginable. I still grieve everyday and he is now 8. Brain injury changes so much. I will never know who my son would have been. etc.

        Reply
  47. My boy had the shot. I was undecided but my partner was for it so I relented. What now?Looks like I’m going to spend the rest of my life worrying he’s going to get leukemia or some other disease because of it.

    Reply
    • Worrying is a waste of your time. Just give your son a healthy diet and life. My son did not get the shot due to misinformation from our home birth doctor. He ended up with severe brain injury. Just be very thankful that your son had the shot and did not suffer massive brain trauma.

      Reply
  48. i’ll be getting the K shot for my lil one when she comes in a few weeks. not because i’m a bad parent, but because i believe it is the right thing to do. if my baby comes out bruised, i’ll be happy to have the shot. If we get into a car accident on the drive home, i’ll be happy i got it. I’ve done my research and have found exactly what pages are biased, this one leans one way and .gov sites are just as outlandish. know that i had the shot, my brother had the shot, all my cousins and friends and i’m betting the majority of the women who are posting on here had the shot because it wasnt a question until recently. I’m seeing a lot of comments of women who say they are glad to have heard this and will be passing with baby # Something-Other-Than-One. What happened to your other babies? did they die from the “poison”? Are they sick now?
    Yes, nature is a wonderful and intelligent thing, but PLEASE, remember that before certain shots and vaccines came into being, the mortality rate of newborns was very high. Do what you think is best, and i will too.

    Reply
  49. I understand that many people have questions in regards to the many different recommendations that pediatricians and OB/GYNs give; however, prior to posting an article that clearly states to “Skip the Newborn Vitamin K Shot” without adequate research and presentation of verified research and data, is doing a great disservice to the general public. There are many people who may read this and not realize the true danger of vitamin K deficiency bleeding. There is an incidence of 0.25-1.7% of unexpected bleeding due to vitamin K deficiency in newborns. As a reference, the American Association of Pediatrics has this very informative summary of their reasoning for recommending intramuscular vitamin K administration to every newborn. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/112/1/191.full This article addresses the reasoning for intramuscular vs oral administration (inconclusive evidence of oral vitamin K preventing late vitamin K deficiency bleeding), as well as, the unfounded association of vitamin K and childhood cancer.

    Reply
  50. This person is a joke. Our baby almost died because of a hemorrhagic disorder that would have been prevented with a faulty vitamin K shot. I hope this article doesn’t lead to that happening to someone else.

    Reply
  51. I just found out that in addition to the long list of unnecessary vaccines, US hospitals try to use my baby as a pin-cushion at birth. I already chose a different schedule (picked denmark’s as it delays all shots until baby has some immune system to speak of and it’s about half of vaccines of US.) We live in PA so we have to put everything in writing and give notice ahead (PA=pharma lobby stronghold state) Now this…. I am so thankful you posted this!!!! I will kill anybody who tries to harm my baby. I am from EU, we do not do this madness back home, and I have a temper (and being an attorney may send a message too). This US policy feels like dodging bullets to stop strangers playing russian roulette with my baby’s life and health.

    Reply
  52. HI

    My wife is due with twins in mid april can you reccommend some good books for bringing them up in a natural way, without vacinations and eating a natural diet etc.

    Thanks for the above info also.

    Thanks Andrew

    Reply
  53. Well, a month ago I would have agreed with you. But right now I’m sitting in the NICU with my 1 month old son who had a brain bleed at 3 weeks. We were in the doctor’s office trying to get his umbilical site to stop bleeding when he began having seizures. The providence of God had us in the right place at the right time, right above the ER, to get him the Vitamin K and Fresh Frozen Plasma that he needed to stop the bleed. Words cannot express the anguish and heartbreak that we felt that day in the ER and still feel over our decision to decline the shot. He may have some deficiencies in his development, only time will tell. But what he has been through in the last two weeks has been terrifying. When we arrived at the NICU he had no blink reflex. To make matters worse he had contracted pneumonia at some point and it all hit at the same time. He had to have a blood transfusion because of the bleed into his brain and all the blood they had to take to do various tests.

    I certainly did not understand the risk of not getting the shot and that is my own fault. Doctors here told us that of those who do not get the shot, 1 in 100 will develop a bleed. And from what I read online since all this happened, exclusively breastfed babies are very vulnerable–not only does Vitamin K not cross the placenta well, it also does not get into breastmilk well. And supplementing orally does not work as fast or as well.
    I still have concern over the leukemia but I’ll say this–it’s much more likely that your child will develop some kind of bleed in the first few weeks of life and trust me, you don’t want your newborn going through all that. Our son lost a lot of blood from his umbilical site after the stump fell off during the last 3 days before the bleed. He had several seizures before I could find a doctor to tell me what was happening to him. The last one was in the ER lasting 6 minutes. He had to have 3 CT scans in 12 hours, multiple X-rays, several IV’s including a PICC line, 2 broad spectrum antibiotics, 2 eye exams because he had some bleeding in his retinas, and now he must have Phenobarbital to prevent seizures which he is at risk for during the next several months as the blood reabsorbs into his body. On top of that, with a brain bleed there is a great risk for developing hydrocephalus, in which the only cure is to surgically put in a shunt to divert the extra fluid into the abdomen, and that is usually a permenant thing.
    Trust God, and get the shot. We certainly will be doing so with our future children, if God is pleased to grant us more. We must trust in His sovereignty in all matters of life, especially our trials.
    By the way, he is doing much better, praise the Lord. He seems like a normal healthy baby and his recovery looks very promising. Babies brains are designed to do things that adults’ brains cannot. But I fear he is the exception. This is the very reason they have been giving the Vitamin K shot–intracranial bleeding.

    Reply
    • Hi,
      My son also had a VKDB at 5 weeks of age. My son had brain surgery and a 1% chance to live. They took the left bone flap out of his head for a few weeks while his brain continued to swell. My son ended up with massive global damage. Today at 8 years old, he is still much like an infant. He is so precious but I would not wish this on anyone. He continues to go through so much because of what brain injury does to the body.

      I am so glad your son’s bleed was caught sooner and he is doing so well. I will also pray for him. So sorry that there are more families going through this. I have tried to get the word out about it but have not been successful enough. We have been on our local news and tv stations about this but not anything nationally. I am also so busy with my son’s needs. Breaks my heart that so much miss info is out there. We were not told the risks ect.

      Thank you for trying to get your story out there. Maybe someday all of us can find a way to educate more people together. Until this year, I had not found anyone else this had happened to. We even tried the Rare Disorders site.

      Take care and you are also welcome to contact me too. Krista and I have talked and it really helps to talk with someone who has been through something similar.

      It’s Just A VItamin People!!!
      Jenny Wade\’s last post: Christmas Curves

      Reply
  54. I’d just like to say that Vitamin K is a very important prophylactic treatment for hemorrhagic conditions and pathological neonatal jaundice. Additionally, no Vitamin K does not cross placenta and it’s actually made by gut bacteria, which of course brand new baby has not yet acquired. I hate it when conspiracists get out there making outlandish claims about some of the medical practices that are set to help and save lives. I believe naturopathy and homeopathy have their place in medicine as complementary medicine, but certainly shouldn’t replace allopathic practices altogether. It’s your precious gift, do you really want to run the risk based on un-cited opinions? Yikes.

    Reply
    • So are you refuting this study? http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1102224
      If so, do you have backup? I’m in a particularly high risk pregnancy and nutrition is an issue this last trimester. I need to be absolutely sure about my decision and would really like to know where you are getting your information from. I read the study above and it states it does cross, as all fat solubles do. So the liver doing its job is a completely different matter. It doesn’t matter what you put into the body if the liver isn’t doing its job. Not sure what makes sense, but I’m sure if you can link something I can figure it out!

      Reply
  55. I appreciate that you are sharing an alternative way of living with other people who are only told what their doctor’s prescribe. That’s really a great thing. However, I feel that the way that the information is presented it criminalizes those of us who choose to go the standard western medicine route. I’m eplileptic and am prescribed phenobarbital (it’s the only medication I’ve ever taken that keeps my seizures at bay) which means that breastfeeding is out of the question for me unless I want a starving junkie baby (which I really really don’t) which means that my daughter didn’t have the chance to get the lovely antibodies in my breastmilk. I also had to be induced 3 weeks premature because I had a nasty case of PUPPs. Induction can cause trauma. I did my research and decided that my daughter needed every advantage that science could give her for her health because I couldn’t give it to her.
    I think that natural childbirth and child raising is great for those who can do it without risks to themselves or their child, I really truly do, I just hate it when I read blogs and articles that make us sound like uneducated women who blindly follow their doctors orders.
    I’m sure that your intention wasn’t to make people like me feel bad about themselves, but it might just be something to take into consideration.

    Reply
  56. Pingback: Skip that Newborn Vitamin K Shot

  57. “Severe reactions, including fatalities, have occurred during and immediately after intravenous injection of phytonadione even when precautions have been taken to dilute the vitamin and avoid rapid infusion …”
    Well that is why it isn’t given through an IV. It is an intramuscular (IM) shot like a flu shot for that exact reason. Maybe you should research that before you write it.

    Reply
  58. Hello, My due date is Dec 7th and I would like to start drinking nettle tea that you recommended to avoid the Vit K shot. Can you please tell where you purchased it from? I found some on http://www.mountainnroseherbs.com but they have nettle leaf and nettle root. I’m assuming the nettle leaf would be more beneficial. Thanks for your time!

    Reply
  59. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/112/1/191.full
    Just an alternate source of more up to date info. Using stats from a study done over 15 years ago is not a good idea.15 years might as well be 100 as far as medical science is concerned. Please note that exclusively breastfed babies are at the highest risk for brain bleeds. I am not in anyway saying someone shouldn’t breastfeed, I am currently training to become an OB nurse and lactation consultant, not to mention a breastfeeding mother, but Vit. K is particularly important to exclusively breastfed babies and no, they will not receive enough via breast milk in the first 2 weeks of life to prevent hemorrhage. I think natural is better in so many ways, but ignoring the good modern medicine can do is not the answer. Why not have the best of both worlds?

    Reply
  60. I fully planned to decline vit K (and we don’t vaccinate our babies, period), but then my firstborn had to come 11 weeks early. Preemies are at EXTREMELY high risk of brain bleeds… in fact, it seems to be a given that a 29-weeker will have some type of brain bleed (usually not severe enough to cause brain damage, but it does happen fairly often). A 29-weeker cannot breastfeed for at least 4-5 weeks after birth. I had to have him get vitamin K (and my hospital did not have oral vit K available).

    I cringe when I read the leukemia stats, but I don’t regret that my preemie had vitamin K… he had absolutely NO brain bleeds, not even a mild one, amazingly enough, and I can only hope that his early start of breast milk and later all organic/grass-fed foods, and no vaccinations ever, will help protect him against leukemia or any other consequences. When I see how happy and bright and inquisitive he is, which probably wouldn’t have been the case had he had brain bleeds and brain damage, I am very thankful he did get vitamin K.

    That said, no other babies of ours will get vitamin K unless, heaven forbid, they are early preemies as well.

    Reply
  61. Pingback: Skip that Newborn Vitamin K Shot « natural birth resource

  62. Really great post . Chances of child cancer ( May be 1 among 500 ) are more fatal than the chances of bleeding among new born babies .If babies are kept safe , the matter of bleeding won’t come and so there is no need to inject synthetic vitamins . Vitamins and minerals are well to take if they come from natural sources . Really , I am agreed to you .Thanks for sharing this useful information .

    Reply
  63. Thanks for sharing such vital information! I only wish this info was more readily available to expecting parents. Too bad doctors and nurses are educated about this.

    Reply
  64. Please stop saying propylene glycol is antifreeze. It is an easily-identified error that makes me question all the other information in your article. ETHYLENE glycol is the substance used in manufacturing of antifreeze due to its low freeze point. Ethylene glycol is highly toxic and ingestion results in immediate vomiting and rapidly to nervous system damage and kidney failure.
    Propylene glycol is NOT used in the manufacture of antifreeze and is not toxic upon ingestion and doesn’t result in vomiting or organ failure. It is frequently used by herbalists to extract herbal and medicinal tinctures for patients who can not tolerate alcohol-based extractions. If one is going to be giving medical advice over the internet, perhaps one should do the simple research that would be expected of any high school science student.

    Reply
    • Actually, propylene glycol is NOW used as an antifreeze in some circumstances. In the past, antifreeze was ethylene glycol, but that’s not always the case now. Notice that I’m not defending or attacking the thesis presented by this article.

      Reply
  65. Pingback: Some more bits and pieces « Counter Propaganda News : The truth is out there

  66. We skipped everything except vitamin K for both of our children. Unfortunately, our second had a double dose (born at home and needed to transfer to hospital for TTN) which made me so angry because I was on the fence about it in the first place. I still don’t know how the second happened (though I have a hypothesis) and my story is too long to share. Her respiration issue resolved, but jaundice prolonged her stay in the NICU. This was not a surprise due to family history. However, her bilirubin level was quite high and the docs go crazy over that. After all was said and done, I did find information that the vitamin k shot is related to hyperbilirubinemia. This made me think that two doses would further increase the bilirubin number. Curious if anyone else has heard of this before. I remember reading about the link to leukemia then and glad to hear (and hope it is true) that the study was discredited. Regardless, we have a family history of leukemia and I do pray that our youngest (21 months) never gets it and hope the vitamin K didn’t increase her risk.

    Reply
  67. I was threatened with social services after the birth of my baby for refusing the vit K shot. But I did not give in to the pressure. The hospital sent a letter to my GP practice to let them know that they should keep an eye on me & my husband because we seem like bad parents endangering the life of our child. They gave me the copy of this letter.
    I’m in UK and the vit K shot is not compulsory but still they try to scare you to accept it.

    Reply
  68. I am a student midwife in the UK, and feel that if you are going to make posts such as these, you have a responsibility to list your sources so people can verify your facts and do their own research. Your article is flawed in many respects, the main one being the link to childhood leukaemia has been refuted, yet you fail to mention this; the research you mention is very outdated.

    The thinking that ‘I didn’t give my baby vitamin K and s/he is fine’ therefore means you can advise other pregnant women to do the same is dangerous. Anecdotal evidence is exactly that – based on no provable, reliable sources. 9,999 babies given vitamin K would have been fine without it. But that 1 baby that potentially could die, or be severely injured, due to haemorrhagic disease of the newborn; there is no way to know which baby could be affected. If that death is preventable, why take that risk?

    As I said above, please provide your sources.

    Reply
  69. Pingback: anyone want to share thier birth plan?

  70. Pingback: Vitamin K | Private Midwifery in Sydney

  71. Hi,
    Didn’t read all the comments above.
    As addition to the post, I would like to mention that delaying clamping the cord would contribute the healthyness of the newborn, making sure he gets all the blood he needs with all the vitamin K included.
    This is an important factor…
    So i quote:
    “Skip the shot, eat your greens” and delay the cord clamping “. Now, THAT makes some sense.”
    Thanks for this article’
    Lilach, Israel

    Reply
  72. Pingback: Headlines of the Week – March 30, 2012 « Excerpts From Space

  73. “Severe reactions, including fatalities, have occurred during and immediately after intravenous injection of phytonadione even when precautions have been taken to dilute the vitamin and avoid rapid infusion …”
    It is given IM not IV. There aren’t many reactions in giving it IM. I would much rather give my child the shot so they don’t bleed to death.

    Reply
    • The full disclaimer actually says:
      ‘Severe reactions, including fatalities, have occurred during and immediately after INTRAVENOUS injection of phytonadione, even when precautions have been taken to dilute the phytonadione and to avoid rapid infusion. Severe reactions, including fatalities, have also been reported following INTRAMUSCULAR administration. Typically these severe reactions have resembled hypersensitivity or anaphylaxis, including shock and cardiac and/or respiratory arrest. Some patients have exhibited these severe reactions on receiving phytonadione for the first time. Therefore the INTRAVENOUS and INTRAMUSCULAR routes should be restricted to those situations where the subcutaneous route is not feasible and the serious risk involved is considered justified.’
      http://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailymed/drugInfo.cfm?id=51404

      This disclaimer is all over the web despite the fact that the newborn injection is advised to be IM. Also, there are side effects associated with the orally taken drug despite the brand. Any drug can and does have known or unknown side effects and the risk vs.benefits should be carefully weighted depending on the situation.

      Reply
  74. The incidence of leukemia is 16 per 100,000 for whites per the CDC website. I don’t know where the 1:500 number comes from but it doesn’t make sense.

    Reply
  75. One of the primary reasons that these shots are so heavily pushed in our society is never truly for the benefit of the child. We have a medical industry that prides itself on how much they can make and how little they can do. Fundamentally, the Vitamin K injection is given to all babies, but boys who are lined up like sheep to have their’ genitals altered suffer the most. Since the infant body doesn’t start production of Vitamin K until the 8th day of life, it would be wise to forego male genital mutilation (A.K.A. circumcision). When there is no medical need, medical intervention should not be permissible by law, especially ones that are sexist in nature as one gender is protected from alteration upon request since 1996. Bottom line, if it isn’t broken, stop trying to fix it or you’ll find nature working against you.

    Reply
  76. When you skip the Vitamin K shot, you really need to skip circumcision. These shots were primarily instituted to keep mutilated infants from bleeding to death. They kind of mandated them for both sexes for safety reasons, because they never ever wanted a boy to be circumcised without it leading to death from bleeding out. It was viewed to be most fool proof to mandate it (sometimes by law) for all newborns. Given the fact that some parents are semi-crunchy (eschewing shots yet embracing RIC) and hospitals are doing less circumcisions pushing this refusal of Vitamin K and continuing with genital cutting could prove to be very lethal! Eliminating Vitamin K must accompany leaving newborns remaining strictly intact!

    Reply
  77. Sarah, I’m a childbirth educator and just tell my students to do LOTS of research before deciding whether or not to do the shot, oral, or refuse. I think the research is interesting, and agree that 1 in 500 is very scary. But I do have a question. Is there any research out there to show a “control” group? ie. How many babies who don’t get the shot end up developing leukemia? Thank you for the thoughtful article.

    Reply
    • Hi Mary,

      Please read my previous posts about my son almost dying form not getting the vitamin K shot at his birth. He now has massive brain damage and at 8 years old is much like an infant.
      I am not sure about most but I would rather my child have cancer than brain damage. There are whole hospitals to help with cancer and most children now survive it. There is NO cure for brain damage. It totally changes everything,
      Though I have been told the link to cancer is very weak if not nonexistent. We all want good health it is the most important thing we have. Just my thoughts as the mother who has been through more than I should have.

      Reply
  78. William Ranford via Facebook March 26, 2012 at 11:57 pm

    Kate Johnson: “I trust that mother nature wouldnt stuff something like that up. Babies are obviously meant to have low levels of vit K for some reason” – mother nature really messed up childbirth, actually. Unsure if you’ve ever had a child – I certainly haven’t – but it involves squeezing a baby out of an opening far too small for a baby. In response, you feel intense pain (unless you have the drugs, obviously) and the bones in your baby’s head are all pushed out of alignment.

    Not to mention the fact that your baby is born with an appendix which is probably vestigial, and a tailbone which is definitely vestigial.

    Mother nature loves screwing with babies; don’t assume that low vitamin K must be “for a purpose” because your baby is born with loads of complications with no purpose at all.

    Reply
    • My son was Circumcised on day 8. He was a home natural calm water birth. He was exclusively breastfed and he did do ok after the circumcision. BUT then at 5 weeks of age, he had a massive bleed on his brain due to Vitamin K Deficiency Bleed. So though I love God, sin has caused things to not always go correctly. This vitamin is critical for some babies and we don’t know which ones until some damage has already happened.

      Reply
      • Baby suppose to start producing vitamin K by temselves on the 8th day. Do you really think your baby would be perfectly ok if he was given a shot? I don’t think he would be. If he was ok after circumcision, then at that time vit K levels were ok. So something must have happened as time progressed.

        Reply
  79. I have a 4-day-old son. He’s in NICU because he keeps having breathing apnea issues. They think his lower jaw is undersized. Well, I rejected the Vit K shot and the Hep B shot right off the bat. But the Ped pushed and pushed and pushed about the Vit K. Said with everything going on w/ him, he needed the shot more than usual infants. I held him off for a couple of days, but hubby finally said he thought we should just give in and I was too tired to argue. Within a day, he was on lights for jaundice. UGH! If only I could go back in time. At least the Hep B is non-negotiable. He didn’t even really push for that one. Weird!

    Reply
  80. They make money from the shots at birth, and then they make money from the subsequent disease that it causes. That’s what our “health care” system in this country is designed to do. They don’t care about you. They care about your money!!

    Reply
  81. TrishandFrank Neverdatamineme via Facebook March 26, 2012 at 8:25 am

    They sell flavorless vitamin K drops for infants here in Europe. Do they sell them in the states as well?

    Reply
  82. Wow, thank you for all this info. My daughter just have a baby a little over a month ago and the mid wife asked if we wanted the shot. We said approved for the reasons at the beginning of your post :( Now it’s time to pray.

    Reply
  83. Linda Scott Tyler via Facebook March 26, 2012 at 2:58 am

    Is it true that in the case of a male child his clotting factor is highest on day 8? Biblically speaking, a male baby was circumcised on the 8th day. Perhaps there was a reason for that, too.

    Reply
  84. Two other very good “remedies” for vitamin k is yogurt before baby’s birth and shepard’s purse tincture after birth. In each of my babie’s birth’s, the blood in the pan gelantized after a couple minutes. Now that’s clotting!

    Reply
  85. Please not that vitamin K is a VITAMIN, not a vaccine. Hemorragic disease of the newborn is preventable with the injection of vit k. I had all three of my babies get the injection while I held them and breastfed. They didn’t even flinch. And they are just fine. No leukemia, no hemorrhage etc. vitamin k IS a naturally produced vitamin in the gut once the bacteria are present…takes up to two weeks. There very well could be a natural reason for some babies to suffer from hdi but it’s probably more of a tragic unfortunate occurrence completely avoided by one small injection. Hold your babies skin to skin, even after a cesarean, let them cuddle and taste you, develop the beginnings of their flora and for goodness sake, breastfeed! I would encourage everyone to get their information from reputable sites, books etc. enjoy your babies as best you can and ask for help when you need it. Being a parent is tough. I hope no ones baby dies from hdi or is severely injured because parents are making an “informed choice” from a chat room or blog and not reading actual research and studies. Ask for help from doctors and get second and even third opinions. Then make your informed choice.

    Reply
  86. Kate RainbowButterfly Johnson via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 11:56 pm

    I trust that mother nature wouldnt stuff something like that up. Babies are obviously meant to have low levels of vit K for some reason, perhaps that we dont understand. If breastmilk has low levels no matter how much vit K you eat then they arent *meant* to have it. I think maybe this has to do with allowing your baby to get all of their blood by not clamping the cord to soon, then they should have enough clotting factors to get them through until their body starts to make vit K. However if your baby is badly bruised there may be a need for it.

    Reply
  87. I researched vaccines extensively before delivering my first baby, a boy. I had a birth plan all written out to make sure he didn’t get any shots or eye drops. I had failed to read up on the vitamin k shot though, and when my doctor refused to circumcise without the shot, we went ahead with it. My son is almost six and doing just fine. But I wish I had known. I would have waited eight days or so and then had it done.

    Reply
  88. Babies have very little vitamin K in their bodies at birth. Vitamin K does not cross the placenta to the developing baby, and the gut does not have any bacteria to make vitamin K before birth. After birth, there is little vitamin K in breast milk and breastfed babies can be low in vitamin K for several weeks until the normal gut bacteria start making it. Infant formula has added vitamin K, but even formula-fed babies have very low levels of vitamin K for several days. This article is flawed in numerous ways

    Reply
    • She cited her source. Where are yours? I’m interested because I am in a unique position with this pregnancy and would like to know if there are other studies that refute her cited source. I also had a doctor lie to me telling me my baby will never get any fat soluble vitamins from my breast milk. You sound a little like her because after research, had she been taught about hind milk she may not have made that claim, or she purposely used scare tactics to get me to agree to the vitamin k shot. Sincerely wondering where you are getting your information. Thanks!

      Reply
  89. Jessica Stanton via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 11:04 pm

    My 1st had a hematomia and my 3rd was posterior with his face bruised. I didn’t think the shot was an option with those issues.

    Reply
  90. Em Singh via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 10:52 pm

    I think its overkill for formula-fed babies but as I exclusively breastfed I was afraid my baby would not get enough. But its not for everyone and parents will need to look at their own individual situations to decide. For me the shot was a good choice.

    Reply
  91. Vanessa Minkoff via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 10:50 pm

    Thanks for the post. We’ve been on the fence about Vitamin K, but now I think we’ll definitely skip the shot!

    Reply
  92. Kati Stiles Carter via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    Lindsay Graves- I have had nettle tea throughout three of my four pregnancies. I think it is the root that is unsafe, the leaves are safe. I take it with Alfalfa herb, Red Raspberry leaf, and Oat Straw.

    Reply
  93. Charlene Connell March 25, 2012 at 10:22 pm

    CPS can come. Most CPS workers won’t pursue a non-case since they are already too busy with caseloads involving real harm and neglect. Do what you think is best and, if they show up, bring baby to the door and show them baby is safe and thank them for their concern and apologize for the over-zealous reporter. It will be a rare incident where they will take it further in the obvious face of no harm. Of course, this is not legal advice, just what I would do.

    Reply
  94. Kristine Winniford via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 10:05 pm

    We’ve declined the shot for our babies as well, our midwife suggests taking alfalfa supplements the last couple weeks of pregnancy to boost your stores. Cheap and painless.

    Reply
  95. Justin Kuehnl via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 10:04 pm

    So, i wonder if just to eat more kale, collards, spinach and such would suffice to eliminate a K shot. then mothers milk would allow for the nutrients?

    Reply
  96. Ty-Megan Gross via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 10:02 pm

    We had planned on declining the Vit K shot with our second, but when she was born with a surprise birth defect which resulted in 4 hours of being worked on before being transferred to a NICU (where she spent the next 8 weeks), we decided to go ahead with it before they took her. I don’t think it’s necessary for typical babies, but have no regrets about my little girl getting it.

    Reply
  97. I was asked by the nurse, “Why don’t you want the shot? You DO know it helps prevent bleeding” so instead of throwing facts at her right after delivery, I said, “Oh I know but I want to wait.” She told me again about the bleeding as if humans normally just bleed. No one ever thinks that if bleeding was such a major issue, why are there more humans today than ever?

    Reply
  98. Kathleen Connolly Yoneyama via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 9:56 pm

    It’s illegal to decline the vit k shot in NY :( I tried… the only way I can decline is is I sign a form declining ANY medical intervention even if it is necessary… I’m not comfortable signing that :(

    Reply
  99. Blood clotting naturally occurs in babies after they are born (spiking near 8th day!) It is truly God’s design…that is when Jewish babies were to be circumcised.

    Reply
  100. I just had my third child. I wanted to avoid this shot and all others, including the eye ointment. Interesting if I declined vit K and eye ointment I was told the nurses would be required to call Child protective services on us. I think this is a new thing, I’m not sure if it was just for the hospital were i delivered, city or state wide. I was not happy about this. my midwife said her patients who declined anyway did have CPS contact them as soon as they arrived home.

    Reply
  101. Verity Roser via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 9:50 pm

    For me being a healthy eater and breastfeeding there was no way my 5 babies were having the Vitamin K shot – I made sure I ate foods rich in Vit K around the time I was due – just in case :)

    Reply
  102. Lindsay Graves via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 9:47 pm

    I read that Nettle wasn’t good during pregnancy… But are you saying it’s alright during the last few weeks?

    Reply
  103. Hannah Bannana via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 9:44 pm

    I have also read that the volume of kit K in the shot is hugely excessive, like 10,000x, is synthetic, activly interfers with with natural production and increases the risk of lukeamia not to mention the flat out dangerous ingredients. xxxxx

    Reply
  104. Michelle Morton via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 9:40 pm

    my first two didnt have any vit K and my third had a bilateral cephalohematoma (with a fast homebirth!) and we did oral vit K.

    Reply
  105. Lauren Majors via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 9:39 pm

    this can be vital for some babies especially since they lack intestinal bacterial, so mom’s need to know what those risks are and who might truly need it. There is an oral version that can be taken several days after delivery in smaller doses that will provide the same effect.

    Reply
  106. Elizabeth Mason Moses via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 9:35 pm

    My son was born with a relatively large hematoma on his head from his rush to get out. The midwife asked if I wanted the K shot. I asked her to read to me the ingredients, when she got to aluminium, I declined. The hematoma was gone in hours nonetheless. And yes, I was getting a good amount of K and K2 from my diet!

    Reply
  107. Elizabeth Cryor Shardlow via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 9:34 pm

    REAL vitamin K, orally, is a great alternative – given at birth, 1 week, 2 weeks, and 4 weeks. We did it at birth and 1 week with both our kids, didn’t do the additional ones as it was obvious that they did not have bleeding issues. The real stuff is green, and isn’t made by big pharma :-)

    Reply
  108. Jennifer Thompson via Facebook March 25, 2012 at 9:31 pm

    I read that it’s good if the child suffered trauma in birth or is expected to get a circumcision. I had a girl and she didn’t get the VitK shot.

    Reply
  109. “Even a mild injury to a newborn could be life threatening if blood clotting capability is not adequate.” IMO, vitamin K administration has less to do with what-could-happen-on-the-way-home and more to do with iatrogenesis (complications brought about by medical procedure). Let’s consider what does or could happen to your baby in hospital…

    * Vacuum extraction (causes hematoma on baby’s soft head).
    * Accidental/unavoidable nics or larger cuts during cesarean.
    * Heel stabs.
    * Blood draw(s).
    * Sepsis workup.
    * Circumcision.

    More research would be needed, of course, for me to prove this hypothesis, but I think it’s easy to see its viability based on this information alone.

    Reply
  110. This shot is not given intravenously to infants. The only time it’s given intravenously is to adults with coumadin problems. This is one of the most unresearched and misinformed articles read in a long time. You should really do some actual research before you give medical advice to countless women.

    Reply
    • I agree! If you make factual statements like that, provide a bibliography so others know where you got your information so you don’t cause panic.

      Reply
  111. Thanks for this info. More than 25 years ago I researched this before the birth of my first child. Turns out the research on Vit K was done decades ago, on very low income women in Detroit who actually lived in the hospital for the last few months of their pregnancy. Considering the state of hospital food in the 1950′s, and that green leafy vegetables were likely not a main part of the food served, and that we still don’t fully understand how Vit K is used and don’t have a very good way to measure it, the resulting recommendations must be considered pretty worthless. I totally agree — we should ALL be eating our dark green leafy vegetables, especially when pregnant, so you can skip the shot and have a healthy baby!

    Reply
  112. Hi Sarah,

    I first want to say that I love your site (I’m a subscriber via googleReader), and I love having access to how so many people are implementing Weston A. Price. I would like to share my story in case in the hope that it may encourage people to reconsider supplementation of Vitamin K (whether oral or intramuscular). Before my son was born, I had read several articles like this one – saying that as long as you have the right lifestyle (diet, birth practices, etc.), you don’t need the Vit K shot. Well, I did all that and my son almost died from Hemorrhagic Disease of the Newborn, also known as Vitamin K deficiency.

    First of all, let me say that we eat a fully Weston Price diet, including lots of healthy fat, especially butter, and meat from grass fed cows, we eat NO processed foods of any kind and generally limit our sugar intake (only from natural sources, almost no refined sugar). I feel that we have a very healthy diet and gut flora. I had my second child this past June – a homebirth – and declined all interventions (erythromycin, Hep B, and Vit K). I had no idea about Hemorrhagic Disease of the Newborn; I thought Vit K was given prophylactically in case forceps were needed or there was some sort of trauma at birth that might cause internal bleeding. I had not researched Vit K as much as I had Hep B (I am anti-vaccine in general) and erythromycin (I know I don’t have an STD, so why interfere with healthy bacteria in the eyes and possibly cloud new baby’s vision). I figured that God knows what he is doing, so we don’t need to interfere. I have since read that HDN, also known as Vitamin K deficiency, is a “disease of modern civilization” and that our diets aren’t as rich in this important nutrient as God intended them to be. Weston Price himself made a big deal about the importance of Vitamin K. I had also read that as long as you don’t cut the umbilical cord until after it stops pulsing, enough blood will transfer and the level of clotting factors will be fine. So, in accordance with the midwives standard practice, we did delayed cord clamping and cutting. We also had NO drugs or interventions of any kind during labor or delivery.

    At one month old (technically, this is “late onset Hemorrhagic Disease of the Newborn”), my son had an intracranial hemorrage, which caused him to stop breathing while being helicoptered to a Children’s Hospital. Then he had a craniotomy (an extremely dangerous operation for a baby so young since it is very easy to bleed out on the table with no way to pump the blood in fast enough), which he survived by the grace of God. However, he has very significant injury to his brain, including vision impairment and developmental delays. Since he’s only seven months old, it is too soon to tell whether he will ever be able to walk or talk, be we are hopeful that God will completely heal him. It just doesn’t seem right that he should have to suffer for a decision that we made.

    I also have read that HDN is typically an undiagnosed liver problem. I can assure you that his blood has been extensively tested and it does not seem to be the case for him. All his factors are normal, we have no family history of liver or blood diseases, and his liver function tests are normal. Based on everything we can tell, this is a simple case of HDN that could have been completely prevented with a shot at birth.

    I agree that whole food sources of vitamin are much better than synthetic (I do not take synthetic vitamins), and I also agree that the ingredients in the shot (as in vaccines) are very troublesome. But I don’t think that the VIt K shot undermines the natural immune system like vaccines do, so we will give Vit K to future children. I would choose whole food Vit K in a shot if that was available or maybe even the oral Vit K.

    Another thing to note, in the Mercola interview with the Vitamin K expert, Dr. Mercola seems to summarize by saying that the shot is completely unnecessary. I don’t think that is an accurate summary of what his guest actually said. He said the oral would give the necessary dose, so the shot isn’t the only way. I think it is important to note that the expert emphasized how important giving Vit K to newborns is, considering the chance that the baby has HDN.

    I think a parent could forego the shot, but would need to vigilantly test the baby’s clotting factors for the first few months of life to be safe. My son’s factors were fine at birth. His blood clotted quickly for the mandatory genetic testing when he was a few days old.

    I would like to add this comment simply to say that there is quite a bit at stake, so please don’t skip the shot unless you will supplement in some other way or at least regularly check the baby’s clotting factors for a few months.

    Reply
    • Nicole, my story is similar. We had a beautiful home birth with our youngest son. We did not do the vitamin K shot – similar reasoning as you mentioned in your post. At 5 weeks old he was rushed to the hospital as he had stopped breathing and had a seizure. He, too, had late onset HDN. He’s 10 months old now. We are doing all we can to help him in his development. He has significant delays in development as well as his vision. I would love to get in contact with you. While I’m hurting that you too encountered what we did, I’m encouraged to find another family that relates to our journey.

      Krista Dearey
      kristadearey@gmail.com

      Reply
    • Hi Nicole,

      Your story is my story. I cannot believe the similarities. My son was born in 2004 and at 5 weeks old had late onset Hemorrhagic Disease of the Newborn. He had massive bleeding on his brain and had a 1% chance to live. He also had the left bone flap of his skull removed because of the swelling of his brain. He now has massive brain damage. He is now 8 years old and much like an infant. He is a joy and has taught me so much but I would not wish this life on anyone.

      To all you out there who did not do the shot – it is not that you were so healthy and perfect. It is simply luck of the drawl. This could have been your child. My son was born at home. I ate healthy. We allowed for the cord to keep pulsing until done etc. We did everything right and this happened. Why some children get it and others don’t. Not sure BUT he had no underlining liver or blood disorder.

      My son is totally and permenatly disabled because he did not get the simple VItamin K Shot. It was FOREVER changed his and my families life.

      IF you decide not to do this vitamin shot please know the risks and signs and symptoms. My son had a bruise on his side. That was a classic sign and I took him to the doctor and on one figured it out. We had a doctor for his home birth. She did not inform me of the Risks of not doing the shot. She did not inform me of the symptoms to look out for.

      Please at least consider the oral drops. However in Australia when they went to oral drops the rise in Vitamin K Deficiency problems or Hemorrhagic Disease of the Newborn increased. Please just be carefully brain damage is so serious and is an awful place to be.

      Nicole – I would love to talk with you. I have not met someone else who has been through this. Please email me jenwade@centurytel.net

      Reply
    • I saw comments from Nicole, Krista and Jenny as I was fuming here after reading this blog post. For the love of humanity, Sarah, unless you have an M.D., do not dish out medical advice!

      My son had late onset HDN also. He was rushed to the ER at six weeks and was in PICU for a week, where he was given a blood transfusion and yes — a Vitamin K shot. The shot literally saved his life, Sarah, so don’t go around telling people that it’s not necessary.

      No, Sarah — I could have eaten as much greens as I could have gotten my hands on and have taken as many supplements as possible, and my son would still not have gotten enough Vitamin K from breastmilk. The best hematologist in Los Angeles told me that. What’s your source for advising people that eating greens would be sufficient — Yahoo news?

      Yes, the chances are 1 in 50,000 or 100,000 that your child would have a Vitamin K deficiency. But hey, I’ve already counted 4 people here who’ve experienced it first-hand.

      Nicole, Krista and Jenny, I wish your little ones all the best.

      Reply
    • Hi I am researching about this information…and I thought… Could it be possible that another way of supplementing a newborn with vitamin k could be with the mother’s own placenta tincture? You probably have heard about placenta encapsulation and tincture right? Well if the placenta holds large amounts of natural vitamin K Could the tincture form the placenta be giving to the baby as a supplement and increase Vitamin K naturally on the newborn??? Thank you for any info I will keep researching myself.

      Reply
    • I’m so sorry to hear that. I couldn’t imagine what you went through. I just thought I would ask, since my knowledge in vitamins isn’t that great, how do you know the shot a Month earlier at birth would have saved your son if he had a liver issue? Would it last that long to help when that happened? How sure are you about this intervention? Surely there are cases like yours in which the vitamin k was administered? Just wondering, I’m about to deliver my 4th. Gave this to my first son but not the last 2. This pregnancy is more high risk and only one vein is going in so I’m particularly worried about the nutrition my baby is already getting so I need to be more proactive than all my last pregnancies/births. There is little information for me and being compromised it seems the shot would be too dangerous but maybe I should consider the oral for this one.

      Reply
  113. Hi Sarah, thanks for all your information. I love reading your blog! I posted the link to your post on the Vit. K shot on my facebook page and had a friend write in with the following:

    The studies linking it to cancer she mentions in the article seem to have been discredited. Also saying all synthetics are bad because vitmin a was, seems like a generalization. Also concerns me that she cites no sources.

    I was hoping that you would respond to his concerns so that I can post that on my page as your response….thanks in advance!!!

    Reply
  114. First I’d like to say its not that I don’t trust your information as valid but am curious if there is more research based articles I could show my husband or mother in law who was previously a nyse as my family had no problem with me questioning the born but they both do not and I just wanted to see if you had any advice on what to show them in ways of different studies on post pregnancy procedures and also if you could recommend a specific probiotic to take while pregnant. Thank you

    Reply
  115. Sarah, is it enough to take butteroil (contains lot of vit k) as mother, or should/could it be given to the baby itself from the beginning when he/she is born? Because this is also part of the homemade formula, why not giving it to the baby from the beginning, even while breastfeeding?

    Reply
  116. I have always thought that not much vit k would cross the placenta because if it did, wouldn’t the cord blood clot? Just a thought..
    And gut health and good gut bacteria is by far THE MOST IMPORTANT factor in keeping anyone healthy, period.

    Reply
  117. Pingback: One Less Stick - How To Avoid The Vitamin K Shot | Being Pregnant

  118. Incredulous American July 29, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    With all the things that we know we don’t understand I almost cannot believe that anyone on this planet, especially the “educated”, ever thought that injecting healthy newborn babies with foreign inorganic substances ever thought it was ever ok to do so but knowing what I know now about industry “standards” unfortunately and dishearteningly I can. What a shame! Ignorance is definitely not bliss. Thank you tremendously for the wisdom you impart, Sarah. I am going to question everything I don’t fully understand and trust my own instincts. Better safe than sorry. Greed is truly a monster!

    Reply
  119. Pingback: Being Informed About Childbirth, Breastfeeding, and Babies | Health, Home, & Happiness

  120. Thank you so much for this post on Vit K. It has lead me to further research and investigation. Reading the comments always helps too. What a great community of readers you have to go along with your fabulous blog! Great information all around. I am expecting my first baby this summer and navigating into the birthing world has been an eye-opening one. There is sooo much to learn for new moms attempting to bring new life into this world as naturally and healthfully as possible. Hippocrates was right: “Let food be thy medicine.” Fortunately, I’m already a big green smoothie and salad eater but I’m going to certainly double my efforts and increase my intake of fermented foods and be sure not to miss my daily cup of Prenatal tea! Thanks again!
    Almira – HealthyRepublic\’s last post: Biodegradable Shoes

    Reply
  121. Andrea von Schoening March 22, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    Thanks for this post! I encourage everyone to do some research on this topic, especially if they are going to have a baby! There are REASONS why nature does what she does! Vit K levels in babies ARE very low before birth. Vit K is linked to fast cell growth – which is why it can cause cancer. Clotting factors other than Vit K are created by the baby JUST before birth … these things all have purposes, even if science has not found them yet! Colostrum, which breastfed babies get before the mother’s milk comes in, is loaded with Vit K. Also, the hindmilk has higher levels of Vit K than the foremilk, so empty each breast completely when you nurse. (Most babies who have problems with bleeding have those problems due to undiagnosed liver conditions.) If, after doing some research, you still decide to supplement with Vit K, then please use the oral solution … babies don’t need to be jabbed – it hurts them and teaches them that this world is not a friendly place. Here is another article which gives more information on Vit K … http://drbenkim.com/vitamin-K-shot-baby.html

    Reply
  122. BostonChapterLeader December 16, 2010 at 11:34 pm

    From The Infant Survival Guide, which I highly recommend:
    The amount of Vit K injected at birth is 20,000 times the needed dose. Additionally, the injection also contains preservatives which are known toxins to the infant. Large doses of Vit K are a cause of jaundice in the newborn. Colostrum, which precedes breastmilk, is rich in Vit K. Thus, an infant who is breastfed immediately at birth will receive a natural source of Vit K, in most cases significantly raising the Vit K level. Birth is an overwhelming sensory experience for the baby – it has never before been cold, hungry, blinded by light, nor felt the touch of cloth or the pull of gravity. Sticking a needle into a baby’s body and inflicting pain isn’t the best way to allow the sensory system to gradually adjust to the outside world.

    Reply
    • I think this is the best reply to the original post – lot of people, including perinatal care providers, don’t realize that the newborn’s system is mapping all that his sensors are experiencing. I have seen babies given the vit K shot and I tell you that the horrendous scream and deep, purple lips cry that turns silent is something that I would never get out of my mind. I think we are all forgetting the fact that the newborn soon (within days) starts producing Vit K in his gut. We are also forgetting that the study that quotes the occurrence of the HD of the newborn does not distinguish between the type of births that each infant had … for example, how many women out of the sample were induced, augmented – increasing the uterine pressure, fiddled with, made to be in the bed and on their backs – compromising the baby’s normal decent into and through the pelvis, and of course early cord clamping – not getting all the blood the baby should normally get, and early vaccinations causing all sorts of damage in the body, including the brain.
      If there was a significant trauma at birth due to for example forceps or vacuum assistance, I might consider it but otherwise the shot does more damage to the babe, on so many levels, than the possibility of bleeding to death in the brain.
      I also would not choose the oral vit K. I don’t believe in the safety of it. There should not be anything but colostrum or breastmilk going routinely into a baby’s immature gut, especially no synthetic pharmaceuticals. I believe it must throw the balance off quite a bit with unknown consequences. There must be a reason why we are born with immature guts and with low blood vit K levels and only gradual levels of self production!
      With my first one I opted for oral vit K – she’s had gut problems, food sensitivities, and eczema from the start, and also weak teeth, even when fully breastfed and me eliminating any dairy and soy from my diet before birth, and virtually no wheat.
      With my second one I opted out completely – very healthy and strong digestion.
      With my third one I will opt out completely as well.

      Reply
      • Wow, I wonder how many are caused by vaccines. I’d like to know those numbers. Since I don’t vaccinate, I’d like to know those numbers.

        Reply
  123. This has given me so much to think about! Both my children had the vitamin K shot and as I am now pregnant with baby #3 my husband and I might need to have a rethink!

    Reply
  124. Stephanie B. Cornais October 18, 2010 at 1:27 pm

    I am SO glad we skipped the Vit K shot for our daughter! I had done no research at all and was just going with my gut! I am so glad I listened to my instincts!
    I also beefed up on vit K naturally by drinking tea. I did a mix of raspberry, nettle and hibiscus and drank it all day long for about a month before I gave birth. I really the tea mixture helped my labor go quicker and my uterus shrink back very quickly too, as well as boost iron and vit k.

    Reply
  125. I was shocked when my otherwise very naturally-minded pediatrician strongly urged the K. So I looked into it. What I found was that there's no link to leukemia, but the shot is an outrageously horrible idea for all the reasons you mentioned.

    The drops, however, done properly as described in many places on the internet, work beautifully. Our ped wrote me a Rx for one that was in almond oil, nothing else. I still didn't feel the need to use it, but my research also showed that since K is made by gut bacteria, and baby gets that at birth from his mother (or whoever holds him first if a C-section!), many babies today will *not* have good gut bacteria.

    If you know you have good gut flora (no bloating, digestive problems, neurological disorders, candida, in you or any of your children), and have a natural birth, your baby should be able to produce appropriate amounts of K beautifully.

    If you do *not* know this – I'd strongly consider looking into the oral K regimen with a natural preparation. It's one of the only "interventions" I'd consider for my newborn, and it's very, very gentle, done by mama herself with only a dropper. If you decide not to do it, be sure to know the signs of the beginnings of hemorrhagic disease, a rare (but happens once/day in the US, statistically) but potentially fatal complication.

    Oh, and if you circ, you just gotta do the K. :P

    Reply
  126. Check your state laws. In New York we were required to give the shot. Oral K was not available in our birth center. We were also warned that to refuse the shot would bring on a visit from social services. Unfortunately we had to give the shot to our daughter though they did allow us to delay it for 59 minutes for some uninterrupted bonding time. At least we can still legally refuse the hep B vaccine at birth!

    Reply
  127. Sarah, the Healthy Home Economist July 16, 2010 at 11:58 pm

    Hi Tanya, Congratulations!! You must be so excited. I am not familiar with liquid vitamin K drops as I used herbs like nettle to get my vitamin K up before delivery. Just make sure they are not synthetic if you are going to go with them.

    Reply
  128. I am due on Sunday and have decided to go with the liquid vitamin k drops. The one I got has high quality vegetable oil in it. Is that safe for newborns?

    Reply
  129. I totally agree, I passed on Vit K with both of my kids, both natural births in hospital though. Something I thought quite interesting at our hospital birth with my daughter, they didn't say a thing about me choosing to decline the vaccines, probably since Florida has a prominent religious exemption for vaccines, but the part that got my goat was that they were in a tizzy about me writing a form that stated I would not be allowing the antibiotic eye drops/ointment based on my religious beliefs…and it had to be "religious". I thought that was the most odd. Esp seeing as my midwife knew me quite well and knew I was not at risk for any infections etc…and was having a natural birth…of course her thing was it was fine by her but it was the "hospital" policy…still completely stupid to be so up in arms about a waiver for eye drops but all non-nonchalant about the vax. My son's hospital didn't say a thing about either…and they are in the same town, and the hosp my son was at is the one with more high risk patients, the other is supposedly a more natural birth friendly hospital. go figure.

    Reply
  130. Hallo and thanks for your discussion. May I ad, that research in the 1990 found, that Vit. K does cross the placenta!! But the placenta does protect the Fötus from artificial (and poissened) Vit. K in high amounts.
    In most medical and pharmaceutic readings you get only half of the information, guess why?
    Heres a part of the study:

    The amount of vitamin K1 was higher in the treated infants than in the nontreated infants. Although there was no difference in the amount of vitamin K1 in the blood of the mothers who received IM or IM and oral doses combined, the infants born to mothers receiving the combined IM and oral vitamin K1 had higher vitamin K1 levels. Therefore, vitamin K does cross the placenta slowly and in small amounts. (Consumer Summary produced by Reliance Medical Information, Inc.)

    Read more: http://www.faqs.org/abstracts/Health/Placental-transfer-of-vitamin-K1-in-preterm-pregnancy-A-prospective-evaluation-of-bone-mineral-chang.html#ixzz0nSgAUr8B

    My conclusions are, that the placenta is a highly "intelligent" organ, that gives the baby all it needs: Eat enough greens or have a green smoothie every day, before and during pragnancy, and while breast-feeding

    (sorry for my english, it`s not my mother-language)

    Reply
  131. I used a liquid vitamin K for my children when they were born, administered orally. This needs to be given multiple times for optimum effectiveness. This is what was recommended to me.. Give 2mg by the oral route at following the first feeding, another 2mg at days 3-7. If no second dose is given during the first week, repeat the 2mg oral dose at 2, 4 and 6 weeks. If a second dose is given during the first week, give a 2mg oral dose at 3 and 5 weeks. If the baby vomits within 1 hour of any oral dose, the dose should be repeated.

    Reply
  132. Sarah, the Healthy Home Economist April 15, 2010 at 1:15 am

    My research and personal experience indicates that vitamin K does indeed cross the placenta .. why wouldn't a vitamin cross the placenta? All other forms of nutrition, many toxins, and drugs do!

    Reply
    • we did oral k2 because my son had bruising at birth, 3 divided doses, but how the heck does “your personal experience” tell you that vitamin k crosses the placenta? That’s just a ridiculous thing to say. Not everything does… if the molecule is too big, it won’t pass. there are likely some good biological reasons for babies to be born deficient in vitamin k… but when a baby is born in a traumatic birth (too fast, too slow, or in my son’s case, big head making its way through a pelvis that didn’t want to yield after an asynclitic pitocin labor) for whatever reason, then yes, K supplements make sense. We would have skipped the first dose if he’d been bruise-free, but he wasn’t.

      Reply
    • Because vitamin k has a higher molecular weight than the other main vitamins and other micro-nutrients and is more water soluble than those largely fat soluble ones. This makes it much harder for it to cross the lipid bi-layers it has to cross to pass from mother to fetus across the placental barrier. That’s why so much of it remains in the placenta, you twit. You haven’t done any research and have absolutely no medical or scientific experience or education. Writing this column without doing anything that looking at Dr. Joseph Mercola’s site of quackery is one thing, but lying to this poster about your experience and understanding is essentially fraud. You should be ashamed. I’ll be contacting your employer to let them know of your ruse and the potential for your obvious lies about personal experience and education to harm people and the liability you should bear for that.

      Reply
  133. Telling the mother to take a Vitamin K supplement or telling her to eat lots of leafy greens doesn't help because Vitamin K doesn't cross the placenta. That's why 1 in 10 0000 babies have hemorrhagic disease, because they aren't born with any of the mother's vitamin K and their bacterial flora isn't developed to synthesize its own vitamin K yet.

    Reply
      • Because not every baby is in a car crash or dropped or bumped on a table or a wall, etc. Hemorrhagic disease is when an accidental trauma occurs and the baby cannot stop bleeding because he/she has no clotting factors.

        Reply
      • Yes, every baby DOES have hemorrhaging issues, its just normally people dont get into car accidents on the drive home or let their newborns get scratched by a cat or even drop their babies on something pointy to prove “Hey, my baby didnt bleed out, you’ve explained absolutely nothing”

        Reply
    • http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1102224
      This says it does. Are you refuting this study? This is confusing! If it happens 1 in 10,000, does it not happen to some with the same trauma? Why or why not? I think people are trying to blurry the lines and offering the shot as the only option when it’s clearly not. Also, it’s the most dangerous option when compared to other options.

      Reply
  134. Sarah, the Healthy Home Economist March 27, 2010 at 1:25 pm

    A recent Dr. Mercola newsletter states that the link between leukemia and the vitamin K shot has been disproven since the study I cited back in the 1990's. The vitamin K shot should still be avoided for the other reasons I discussed due to its toxic ingredients and potential long term effects on the newborn. Mercola concurs with this assessment and here is the link to the full article.
    http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/03/27/high-risks-to-your-baby-from-vitamin-k-shot-they-dont-warn-you-about.aspx

    Reply
  135. Sarah, I would love to try to get a hold of you via email. I have a new resource blog for moms by moms that i would love to have this or any other post of yours on. Please email me at kitekoop AT gmail DOT com. Thanks!

    Reply
  136. A pediatrician I interviewed before my daughter was born said to me
    "well maybe when you're older, you'll learn to research things, unfortunately that may be too late for your daughter…this could kill her"
    Well, guess what…my daughter survived!!! (but I'm the idiot)

    Reply
  137. Sarah, the Healthy Home Economist March 17, 2010 at 6:59 pm

    Camellia, the purpose of this blog is provide readers the OTHER side of the story, the one that they won't get from their doctors or hospital nurses/midwives. The chance of hemorrhagic disorder is so incredibly small – is it worth injecting poison into every single baby that is born? I think not. Why don't you advise your pregnant clients to eat leafy greens or even take a vitamin K supplement instead of giving every newborn a shot that contains antifreeze and carbolic acid among many other toxins? The risks inherent in the vitamin K shot are infinitely greater than the rare hemorrhagic disorder you describe. There is a link between vitamin K and leukemia – perhaps it hasn't been proven to your satisfaction with only one study proposing the link, but it has to mine. There is obviously serious damage that will result to a newborn getting injected with the poisons in this shot with no functioning liver to detoxify it. Common sense is the order of the day here, not more propaganda and fear from the AMA that "your baby might DIE if you don't have this shot". We Moms are SO OVER the fear tactics of the medical community and the use of fear to manipulate our actions with regard to our children. We are making our own decisions now. Move over honey, there's a new game in town.

    Reply
    • Pardon me, but you seem to be a pot calling a kettle black. “Moms are SO OVER the fear tactics of the medical community and the use of fear to manipulate our actions with regard to our children”? Your article reads exactly the same way: as a fear tactic. Careful, Vit K can cause Leukemia! Watch out, there are other bad things in the shot with the Vit K! Be afraid! You could seriously comprise your child! Or worse! Kill him/her! Sure, there is always two sides to a story and sometimes better choices than others depending on the situation, but you aren’t presenting it that way. You’re just pumping out more fear from the other side. That doesn’t help people make informed decisions.

      Reply
      • Well said, T’Lai! This article has done nothing but confuse me further. Citing possibly out of date research linking this shot to leukemia and telling moms to eat their greens, even though this does not actually raise the fetus’s Vitamin K levels, is not helpful advice.

        Reply
    • where is the scientific proof? i focus on prenatal & child development in my studies and there has never once been one scientific study that has proven a correlational link between leukemia and the vitamin k shot. YOURE the one using fear tactics trying to scare people out of getting their babies vaccinated.

      Reply
    • You can eat all the leafy greens you want, the scientific proof is that the baby still in your womb will get almost none of that

      Reply
      • Tiffany, if the baby gets almost none of the nutrients eaten by the mother then what is the point of taking prenatal vitamins? A healthy functioning body and immune system start with nutrition, not chemical injection.

        And to all those claiming she is using “fear tactics” are you kidding me? The chemicals in injections and vaccines alone should be enough to scare someone out of vaccinating. It’s absurd. Your body is not made up of these chemicals so do you honestly think it knows what to do with them?

        Reply
        • so you would rather risk your child getting a deadly disease as an infant because you choose not to vaccinate than to protect them?

          Reply
        • MommyToBe I love your comments. There are a lot of great ways to do things without shots, vaccines, and other harmful stuff. And I love that you pointed out the fact that why on earth would we take prenatal vitamins if our baby wasn’t getting the nutrients! I like to be informed and I think this post was helpful, not a scare tactic. Some people just aren’t well informed or they choose to let the government tell them what is best for their kids and that’s just plain messed up.

          Reply
        • Because other vitamins can cross the placental barrier in large amounts, but vitamin k cannot. Vitamin k has a higher molecular weight and is more water soluble and not fat soluble, which prevents most of it from crossing to the baby. That’s why the shot is needed.

          Reply
          • Not everything crosses the placenta. B/c one vitamin does not doesn’t mean none of the vitamins do. The same thing goes for breastmilk. What crosses the placenta doesn’t always cross into the breastmilk & vice versa.

          • There is no argument.The fact is Vit. K doesn’t cross the placenta so IM Vit K has to be given {not oral} to prevent hemorrhagic disease of the newborn. Common neonatology knowledge . I’m a neonatologist.}

  138. The link between leukemia and vit K has not ever been proven. This is seriously out of date information. There was one study showing that which has never been able to be recreated. In other words, it is not proven. I do not see where you have in your essay information regarding hemorrhagic disorders of the newborn, most of which are fatal and are nearly 100% preventable by the vit. K shot. I am a home economist by training, as was my mother and my daughter is a R.D./L.D. so she is as well. I am also a licensed midwife/CPM. Please give your readers all the information. Hemorrhagic disorders are very serious and are not to be so lightly dismissed.

    Reply
    • Why fix something that isn’t broken to start with? The placenta contains huge amounts of Vit K yet none of it transfers to the baby. Is this a flaw in our design? I don’t think so. There is obviously a good reason it doesn’t transfer, just because we don’t know why yet, doesn’t give us the right to pump it into them (along with a whole lot of other poisons) at 100 times the dose that is *required* (who pulls the magic RDA out of their backside anyway? There are so many RDA’s that are ridiculous at best out there. But I digress…)
      HD of the newborn happens to a very tiny group of babies, who have trauma at birth (and let’s face it, who causes most of birth trauma these days?? um let me think, interventions, Dr’s, Ob’s, Paed’s, even some pushy medically minded midwives who have no clue about the true workings of birth.. But I digress again!) and then of that very tiny group of traumatised babies, most will recover with no treatment.
      The chances of this actually happening is soooooo small, to poison EVERY baby is ludicrous at best, CRIMINAL at worst.

      Reply
      • If there is Vit K in the placenta, then it would make sense that some mammals eat their own placenta. My mom cooked my placenta as a old Chinese tradition for me after birth and I thought it strange yet intriguing… I loved the idea and the taste so much, I ate my subsequent ones.

        Reply
        • I was thinking about placenta encapsulation and Tincture….Could it be possible to supplement a newborn with the mother’s placenta tincture??? I believe it could be a good natural source of natural vitamin K for the newborn. What are your thought. I will keep researching myself. Thanks!

          Reply
          • You can encapsulate the placenta. My friend does this for work: Picks up the placenta at the hospital, cooks it, and delivers it to the mother as-is or encapsulated (if she doesn’t like the idea of eating placenta)

            If the mother breastfed the baby after eating the placenta, maybe the mother’s body would break down the vitamin K which could be transferred to the baby… sort of like a mother/baby bird.

      • I guess I would like to see your research! I would encourage all you mommy-to-be’s out there to do your own research as well, and not just get it from a blog r wickipedia! Find a REPUTABLE source! Also, keep in mind that interventions by medical professionals are sometimes needed in situations where both mom and baby are at risk. I know that pregnancy and birth are natural things that our bodies are made to do… HOWEVER, things go wrong, complications arrise and medical interventions are needed. Trust me when I say that the docs, midwives nurses ect, do everything they can to help the process occur naturally and without intervention. With that being said, “trauma” can occur as the baby just moves through the birth canal/ thought moms hips as she labors. Because baby cannot synthesize vit K in the intestines without bacteria flora, they are deficient in clotting factors. The smalled things that may cause a bruise (remeber, they just sqweezed their way through a small opening) can cause a hemorhage. Also, at the end of your post you wrote, “Skip the shot, eat your greens. Now, THAT makes some sense” . Yes, that would make sense for anyone else… but not newborns! They cannot have greens… hence the injection.

        Reply
        • I believe the “Have your greens” is inteded for the mother-to-be, the benefits of which will be absorped by the baby (when it is born) through breast feeding…

          Reply
          • You do realize that’s coming from a GOVERMENT website right? Lol same exact people recommending the SHOT! Get outta here with that shiznit.

          • OMG – that is from a GOVT site fool.. They get a kickback from the drug companies who manufacture this witch’s brew.

        • Cait, I’m not sure where you get your info, but dr’s don’t do everything they can to help the process occur naturally and without intervention. IV’s, monitors, epidurals, being stuck in bed, breaking the water, even the standard push position used in hospitals (worst position you could be in!) all inhibit the true natural birthing process. And you really thought the author of this blog meant the baby was supposed to be fed greens? SMH The healthier the breast feeding mother, the healthier the baby.

          Reply
          • It’s a pretty big assumption that the baby will get much vitamin k from the breast feeding. Those first few days would be the time you’d most want the baby to have the vit k (Remember baby just got pushed through a tight space that very well could have changed the shape of his head, albeit temporarily. When was the last time you crushed an appendage hard enough to change the shape of it? Never?) Even experienced mothers tend to forget that right after the birth they’re just producing colostrum which is very concentrated with sugars and antibodies but out of a 30 minute feeding they would make maybe 5mLs of colostrum. It’s hard enough to get the baby on the breast but putting more pressure on the mom to feed the baby to prevent hemorrhage in the baby would be more than most moms can reasonably stand. A lot of the time that moms quit breast feeding is because they feel they’re failing in some way. How can they quantify how concentrated their milk is with vit k? How much is needed to prevent hemorrhage in their baby? And also, taking more fat soluble vit k doesn’t lead to a higher concentration of vit k in the body. It converts into animal fat just like vitamin c when taken in excess.

          • Actually, the standard push position–which is basically a slightly reclined sitting position–is one of the best positions you could be in.

            Or are you operating under the completely outdated belief that women in hospitals are forced to give birth while lying flat on their backs? Because they’re not. (Nor are most women “stuck in bed” at hospitals, or forced to have epidurals, or whatever else it is you think happens to them.)

        • Who is reputable these days? Not the CDC, not the FDA. They are on the side of Corporate income. Look up Michael Taylor, he’s a Monsanto man. Look up Julie Gerberding, she recently left the cdc to go back to …. you guessed it, Merck. So… they are both essentially there to further their corporations wish lists. How about most doctors? They parrot whatever their professors in Med School tell them, and seldom research beyond that. Those that do, risk their reputations and practices, and come under extreme scrutiny.

          Reply
      • to call it a poison is ludicrous. every little thing that is in the world now (and has been for a long time, depending on your age YOU got the shot too) is not poison. There are, however more physical dangers that your baby are at risk to when born. Car accidents, being dropped, if they need emergency care at the hospital you better believe they’ll give that shot even without your consent before attempting surgery.

        Reply
    • It’s ETHYLENE glycol, not PROPYLENE glycol in antifreeze & hydraulic brake fluid. You should get your facts straight before you give people information that could cost them their baby’s life.

      Reply
  139. I found your blog through BlogFrog. Great post. I skipped the Vitamin K shot (and so much else)with my son, based on important information like this. Keep up the great work! I look forward to seeing you around the BlogFrog community!
    All the Best,
    Lori (theBlogFrog)

    Reply
  140. Thank you. This information is very timely for me, since I am due to deliver a baby boy in a little over a week. My daughter did not get the shot. I think the midwives only recommend it to cover their liabilities. I wonder if they know about the leukemia connection.

    Reply
  141. I followed this advice for my second, if only I had known this info for my first. The difference is night and day. His liver was unable to detoxify along with Hep B at birth and we have been dealing with that ever since. Thanks for helping others become more aware!

    Reply
    • Hi anonymous, these types of problems can be helped with the GAPS diet, it heals and seals the gut, which is where all these issues originate x

      Reply
    • Should have stopped after second paragraph.
      - vitamin k crosses placenta poorly with a maternal:foetal gradient 30:1, babies are born with relative vitamin k deficiency
      - breast milk contains 1-2mg/L K1 which is such a tiny amount, so exclusively breast fed babies are higher risk (unless given supplemental vitamin k at birth)
      - you can give baby oral vitamin k if that sounds better than a needle. Although I personally think a brain bleed sounds worst – which is not ‘slow’ and is increasing in incidence due to not giving to newborns

      Reply
      • Thank you for being the only sane person on here. There have been four near deaths due to vitamin K deficiency bleeding in less than a year in Nashville alone. This only seems rare because it is under reported. Not injecting your baby with vitamin K means that your baby could pay for your poor decisions with his life. Many hospitals are using a natural and preservative free vitamin K shot and no child has ever been diagnosed with VKDB after receiving the injection. Follow good medical advice and save your child’s life.

        Reply
      • There is a natural reason for a vit K ‘deficiency’ in infants. It has to do with cell development in utero among other things. ALL babies are born with low levels. It would help your cause to also mention the contributing factors of Hemorrhagic Disease which might not actually help your cause since those factors are rare and reduce the already low occurrence of HD in the first place.
        The only reason there would be a rise in the occurrence of HD is because the rise in mother medicated pregnancies and the rise in unnecessary birth interventions. Reduce those by treating the mother and baby naturally and proactively and I guarantee you will see a reduction in the occurrence of HD.

        Reply
        • That isn’t the only reason for a rise in HD. I have six children. None received the shot. The first five were perfectly healthy. They have been so, so healthy – never needed antibiotics, etc. But in the case of my 6th baby he ended up with HD. I was not on any medications. Healthy pregnancy. Beautiful home birth. No complications or birth interventions. My ONLY “risk factor” was that I was breastfeeding him. I wish there was more explanation for me as to why my son ended up with HD, two large spontaneous brain bleeds, and diagnosis of traumatic brain injury/cerebral palsy. If I could turn back time I’d give the vitamin k shot in a heartbeat. http://judahsjourney.com

          Reply
          • Thank you for these sane responses. There is so much medical misinformation and misunderstanding of science.

            I think, ideally, the author would do better to stick with home economy, if that’s indeed her forte.

    • There is so much misinformation here.

      1. From the package insert, this is indeed the same vitamin K as in green veggies (K1). I’m sure the vitamin in multivitamins is not hand harvested from spinach, either. This would be impractical.

      2. There are 3 types of injection: 1) intravenous/into the vein, 2) intramuscular/into the muscle, and 3) subcutaneous/shallow, into the skin. The insert notes some adverse events with the first two routes, and only to use them if the risk of bleeding out is higher. There are no adverse events noted with subcutaneous injections.

      Finding this *correct* information took me about 1 minute. And no other study since the 80s seems to have found a link to leukemia. In any case, unless the risk is high, the oral K dose might be a good compromise. I’ll look into the data and discus with my medical team.

      Reply

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