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Jaundice and breastfeeding

My 1 week old has Jaundice. When he was 3 days old we had to go to the hospital and have him under lights for 24 hours luckily I was able to continue breastfeeding. They sent us home with home lights (the "bili-blanket" and it hasn't gone down.

So they're suspecting that it's breastfeeding jaundice. So far my doctor is telling me to continue to nurse, but the on-call doctors keep urging me to formula feed (which I won't do unless it's the LAST resort)/

Has anyone's child had breastfeeding jaundice and what did you do to help it besides switching to formula?

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Asked by Anonymous at 6:39 PM on Nov. 3, 2009 in Babies (0-12 months)

Answers (8)
  • My DS had jaundice when he was born. I was told to nurse, nurse and nurse some more! It went away on it's own by the Wednesday after he was born, but my milk came in really fast and in abundance and he ate all of the time! I don't know if that had anything to do with it or not.

    Answer by WindyTheWidow at 6:40 PM on Nov. 3, 2009

  • I was told to nurse, and make sure she had sun exposure. It went away by the next appointment.

    Answer by serioussifL at 6:43 PM on Nov. 3, 2009

  • I had one friend who was told to stop nursing and did she pumped for 3 days while she gave 1/2 and 1/2 Breast Milk with the formula and another who was never told to stop. I think it just depends on the doctor.

    Answer by But_Mommie at 6:45 PM on Nov. 3, 2009

  • Keep nursing as much as possible. My family doctor said it is quite commo for breastfed babies to be jaundiced. My son was very yellow but his levels weren't dangerous so I just kept nursing. My milk takes about 3-5 days to come in, so my kids all got a little jaundiced. Breastfeeding jaundice isn't usually serious (that was the impression I had).

    Answer by micheledo at 6:48 PM on Nov. 3, 2009

  • I don't know much about it, but stop in the Breastfeeding Moms group and speak with Gdiamante. She's one of the admins and very helpful.

    Answer by Krysta622 at 6:49 PM on Nov. 3, 2009

  • still keep breastfeeding .. i had the same problem with my lil girl. i put her under the blanket and took her out to the sun.. and it all cleared up.. so continue..:)

    Answer by MylilLondon at 7:44 PM on Nov. 3, 2009

  • Nurse, Nurse, and nurse some more and get that baby in the sun. Both mine had it and NEVER did my doc tell me to give formula. The first was high enough to need hospital and blankets at home, but the doc said natural sunlight works better then the blanket and nursing gets it out of them the quickest. Some docs just don't know the guidelines when it comes to nursing children. Also jaundice tends to make them tired so I would nurse one side until they fell asleep and then change a diaper and put a cold wash cloth on them and nurse the other side to get as milk into them as possible.

    Answer by aeneva at 8:04 PM on Nov. 3, 2009

  • Breastfeeding jaundice isn't very common at all... and usually it goes up HIGH and is very difficult to bring down while breastfeeding and will come down quickly with formula.
    With babies I've seen that have breastmilk jaundice... they are treated for jaundice under lights and it goes down slowly... if they stop breastfeeding it goes down fast but as soon as they breastfeed again it shoots back up again.
    in all the babies I have seen with jaundice I've only had 2 with breastmilk jaundice.... so I would just keep nursing. If the level isn't high enough that they want you in the hospital then it's probably not the problem.

    Answer by AmiJanell at 12:09 AM on Nov. 4, 2009

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