Learn more about the three medications commonly offered to your baby after birth.
Vitamin K helps activate the body’s ability to clot it's blood. Newborns are not born with enough vitamin K and do not receive enough of it through the placenta, cord blood, or breast milk at birth (a diet of breastmilk builds up vitamin K stores over time and the baby's gut starts to manufacture it's own vitamin k). This can lead to a rare but serious condition called “vitamin k deficiency bleeding” or VKDB (also known as "hemolytic disease of the newborn" or HDN).
Erythromycin Eye Ointment
Eye ointment is used to combat ophthalmia neonatorum (ON), a kind of pink eye which causes blindness and is caused by chlamydia and gonorrhea (sexually transmitted diseases).
Hep-B vaccine is another common medication offered to newborns. You may choose to vaccinate at birth, delay vaccination, or not vaccinate based on risk factors and personal preferences.