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My son has lost 11% of birth weight at day 6. Would appreciate the opportunity to talk this through.

(21 Posts)
ValiumQueen Wed 31-Oct-12 11:48:14

DS is my third child. I exclusively breastfed his sisters. Of the three, he is the best feeder by far.

He was 9lb 1/2oz at birth and when weighed yesterday was down 11%. He was weighed after a soiled nappy, and when due a feed. I was sent to the hospital and they took bloods, all fine. They wanted my feeding observed on the ward. I declined as there was no need. They want him weighed twice weekly and if he does not gain well, we will be admitted.

He had no signs of dehydration, is mildly jaundiced, was weighed at a less-than-optimum time, was born mid afternoon, is a very good feeder, is peeing and pooing very well, is alert etc, plus I am an experienced confident feeder.

They wanted me to supplement with formula. I asked how this would help my apparent poor milk supply. They could not give me a reason.

They wanted me to express and feed him the EBM and keep a log of how much he drank. How is that going to help anybody?

AIBU to be a bit pissed off about this? Can I refuse further weighing or will this just set off alarm bells with the medics?

Thank you for listening. Any feedback would be gratefully received. I was very upset yesterday and did doubt myself for a while. I am feeling a bit better today, but still feel very much under pressure.

cakeandcustard Wed 31-Oct-12 11:57:31

Hi, my DS1 was born at 37 weeks at 8.5lbs, as far as I remember he dropped nearly 1lb in the first week, he was severely jaundiced and we were admitted. However the midwives never suggested formula, we were encouraged to exclusively breastfeed.

He stopped making dirty nappies by about day 6, I don't think my milk came through til then so I topped him up with formula to hydrate him but by the end of the second week we gave up with the formula and he was exclusively breast fed til 7 months.

Topping him up with formula for a few days is a good idea if he becomes dehydrated, IMO it won't affect your ability to breastfeed in the long term and will probably put everyones mind at rest.

cakeandcustard Wed 31-Oct-12 11:59:41

Meant to say good luck smile, hope everything settles down soon

worldgonecrazy Wed 31-Oct-12 12:06:07

I would suggest getting him re-weighed. There is every chance that someone somewhere has written a weight down incorrectly, transposed a couple of figures, or even that the scales weren't working correctly. If he is alert, happy, healthy and has lots of poos and wet nappies this sounds like a much more likely explanation than your breastmilk not being enough for him.

My DD is approaching 3, but the guidance when she was little was that they shouldn't be weighed more than once a week, due to the fact that a poo can be a fairly large percentage of total body weight when they're so tiny, and weighing immediately before or after a poo can skew the figures.

worldgonecrazy Wed 31-Oct-12 12:07:46

should say - get him reweighed in a couple of days.

Longdistance Wed 31-Oct-12 12:10:07

I have always listened to what my mw said to me..... You look at the child, and not the scales.
If he is feeding really well, and bloods are all good, just carrying on doing what you're doing. If he's happy, then there is no problem.
Keep an eye on that jaundice, my dd2 had it bad, but not bad enough to be admitted. She was like a bright yellow canary.

FireOverBabylon Wed 31-Oct-12 12:11:15

my DS lost 11% as well - the midwives and health visitors kept banging on about how great an ammount of weight this was to lose. My milk didn't come in until day 6 but he was a great feeder from then on.

I would avoid formula feeding or expressing as DS could alwasy get more milk out of my boobs than I could! Just keep offering him feeds and make sure he drains each side so he's getting the hind milk and he will get there.

Longdistance Wed 31-Oct-12 12:12:18

Oh yeah, and with dd1 the scales were wrong. They thought she lost 18% of her weight, when in fact it was only 7%.

Kveta Wed 31-Oct-12 12:21:32

do you have someone you trust with bfing advice who could observe a feed? I ask as I thought I was an experienced bfeeder but when DC2 was making me cry with her latch I got my local bfing counsellor to have a look, and she sorted me out in seconds!

wrt weight, was his birthweight correctly recorded? again with DC2 they wrote her weight down wrong - luckily DH had taken a photo of the scales so we knew it was recorded wrongly. Friends of ours had similar but a whole lb of difference between recorded weight and actual weight.

then wrt feeding, best bet is just to feed feed feed, every time baby squeaks, feed him. I would go along with some weight monitoring for your own information, but hopefully someone more knowledgeable like tiktok or TruthSweet or EauRouge can come along with more helpful advice smile

Alibabaandthe40nappies Wed 31-Oct-12 12:24:40

In this situation - if you are confident and happy he is well then yes you can refuse too regular weighing.

DS2 was big at birth - 9lbs 9ozs and he lost a large percentage of his weight. I refused to top up, refused to express and bottle feed EBM on the basis that it would bugger supply. And I refused to have him weighed every 2-3 days with the axe of admittance to hospital hanging over me - having been down that road with DS1 (wasn't admitted but it was a horrible time)
I agreed to another weighing in a week, from the same midwife on the same scales. He was steady - cue much twitching.
A fortnight later he had put on 20ozs.

I told them that if I had any concerns I would take him to my GP.

Don't let them interfere because it can really bugger things up if you start messing with BF at this stage.

Oh - and congratulations smile

tiktok Wed 31-Oct-12 12:37:53

Poor help, info and support from the sound of it sad

You don't seem to have been given any ideas on what to do about this, and in fact have been given misleading info and advice.

Yes, to the reweighing, yes to checking their calculations are correct, yes to checking they have translated metric/imperial correctly.

If all appears to be well after that, then you don't need to do anything smile

If there is still a concern, then simply feeding more often and ensuring effective milk transfer would seem to be quite enough....this does not sound like a baby who is compromised or even approaching it, but do discuss with an HCP you trust..

Hope things go well smile

ElphabaTheGreen Wed 31-Oct-12 12:39:50

My DS also lost 11% of his birth weight but fortunately I had midwives with common sense to burn. On the day he got the 'bad' reading, he very obligingly did a poo after the midwife took him off the scale which she saw and pronounced copious and normal and we'd removed a heavy, wet nappy off him. He was slightly jaundiced but roaring at her at the time so wrote 'very alert' in his notes, which I guess is midwife-speak for 'screaming his tits off'. For my peace of mind more than anything, she got a paediatrician on the phone just to say 'he's lost loads of weight, but appears perfectly healthy. Do we really have to bring him in?' Paed said no. Midwife said, just keep feeding him as often as you can, and try and get him into the sunshine which I did. Two days later, he was up to having lost only 4% of his birthweight. Formula top-ups were never mentioned.

So, no. I think with your experience with two other DCs and the circumstances you've described, there's nothing wrong with what you've suggested. The MWs are just being very cautious.

ValiumQueen Wed 31-Oct-12 13:22:10

Thank you for all your feedback. Very helpful. With my first child I was given very conflicting advice by everyone I came across, and vividly remember a bitch of a MW grabbing DDs swollen bruised little head, while she was crimson with screaming, and grabbing my breast with the other, and shoving it in her mouth, and her gagging and looking utterly terrified. I refused to have anyone else come near us, and have refused all help with her siblings.

With DD1 I was quite obsessive recording times and duration of feeds, and after about a week realised this was making matters worse, as I was clock watching rather than baby watching. I did not do that with either DD2 or DS.

My notes from hospital say ' baby feeding well, latch good, good output' etc. I am more than happy for him to have any treatment if there is clear clinical evidence it is needed. I will not have someone interfere with how I feed my child.

ValiumQueen Thu 01-Nov-12 12:13:28

DS put on 40g, so they are happy, but to continue to be weighed 3times a week (wtf?) and encouraging top ups. I said no. He is fine. Ok to weigh, although I do not agree with it, but I am not giving formula.

neolara Thu 01-Nov-12 12:15:52

My midwife said she never weighed babies until they were 2 weeks old because parents always got in a flap when they saw the babies had lost weight. She said she didn't expect the weight to be regained until 14 days.

ValiumQueen Thu 01-Nov-12 12:19:56

neo I wish that was policy everywhere. If there is a problem with the baby there will be physical signs. I am an experienced feeder, but have been so stressed by this, which is hardly good for my milk supply.

AmandinePoulain Thu 01-Nov-12 12:33:22

Dd2 was 2.96kg at birth (9th centile) and was born at 37+4 by scan but only 37 weeks by my dates - ie. a day off being prem. At 12 days old she hadn't got back up to her birthweight, and the HV got all tizzy about it. She was bfeeding well, had plenty of wet and dirty nappies, and was alert when awake. She was still jaundiced and my (more sensible!) mw send us in for bloods. At the hospital she was reweighed - and had apparently gained 160g in 2 days hmm! She'd either caught up very quickly or the HV's scales were completely wrong (the hospital's weight fitted along her 'line' much better). 10 weeks on and she's a chunky monkey, climbing up the centiles and now about to hit the 50th!

I wouldn't be concerned by one 'poor' weight (I'm a SCBU nurse), if he's producing lots of nappies and feeding regularly and seems happy carry on as you are, especially as seeing as his bloods are ok he's obviously getting enough. I know that it's hard not to worry about your own (I started a thread myself after that loon HV worried me, looking back I was right to trust my own knowledge.

Good luck, and enjoy your son (and the nappies wink grin!)

tiktok Thu 01-Nov-12 12:34:52

neo, I think that policy is wrong, 14 days, if you suddenly discover a problem then, it's panic stations.

It's fine if you have good community midwifery care, and good knowledge about how to spot ineffective feeding, but this is not always the case,

ValiumQueen, your baby sounds fine on the info here, and 3 x week weighing seems a lot, I agree.

ValiumQueen Thu 01-Nov-12 13:14:53

Thank you ladies. Yes tiktok if there is a problem, two weeks is a long time to leave things.

I am feeling a lot better for talking things through. I really appreciate your support thanks

amandine I will concentrate on enjoying him rather than worrying about him grin

blushingmare Thu 01-Nov-12 21:41:02

My DD lost 14% of her birthweight by day 6. I was fortunate enough to have a very pragmatic community midwife who looked at her, saw that she was alert, a good colour, actually a bit chubby looking and producing plenty of nappies. She therefore simply said "keep going - you're doing great". After dropping from the 75th to the 25th centile, DD has stayed on the 25th ever since, so I reckon maybe that's just where she was supposed to be in the first place and she was just born a bit too big! Good luck.

ValiumQueen Thu 01-Nov-12 21:50:16

blushing how refreshing to have a sensible approach. Both my girls were big at birth and now 50th percentile.

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