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Jaundice in Newborn

Recently, I had a fright when my little girl was hit with jaundice. On the fourth day after she was born (Monday, 15th October), I went to Klinik Ibu dan Anak at Kota Sentosa to report on my delivery. Never did I expect that her jaundice reading shoot up to 18.5. Based on standard procedure, they had advise me to admit my daughter for phototherapy in hospital.

Being a concern mother, I don't hesitate but just admit her. Of course, admitting her means admitting myself back to hospital. Again, her blood was taken for checking. To my surprise, the level shoot up to 21 and the doctor say its critical. I had to feed her and takes care of her while taking care of my confinement month. Daughter vs confinement - definitely priority on her. I was a nightmare for me as I had to put her into the therapy, seeing her naked and freezing inside. I didn't expect that the kid's ward in hospital is air-conditioned!

The doctor came attended to her and keep asking me to feed and make sure she pee and poo. He even tell me the possibility if jaundice goes up. What I can say - the doctor succeeded in scaring me with all the possibilities! Being first time mom, I fed her every 30 minutes throughout the night. I'm so glad that I made the decision of buying an electric pump instead of manual one.

The next day, her jaundice level drop down to 12.7. Hhmmmm, can jaundice level really drop so drastic overnight? Anyway, the hospital discharge me but I had to report back to Kota Sentosa the next day to check on the level. Overall, she was pricked three times while in hospital! My little girl, at age 4 days old had  to gone through such pain. Ouch!

The next day, I report again at Kota Sentosa. The level goes up to 13.7 and the doctor ask us to come back the next day to check again. Then, the next day again.

Saturday, 20th October - The doctor in Kota Sentosa ask me to go to Poliklinik to check again as Kota Sentosa are closed on Saturday. Sensing that the level will go up again, I decided to bring her to KPJ. And again, yes, I'm right! Her jaundice goes up to 17.

KPJ admitted her for another photo therapy. I felt like crying when I had to leave her there and go home alone. Sobs. However, this time, I don't feel so much suffering compare with the first admittance. I went back again during evening to bring my stock of milk for her. When I see how the nurses there takes care of her, I felt a sense of relief. Also, at least, here, she don't have to had her blood taken three times a day. The doctor will only check again the next day.

The next day, result of her jaundice is 16.0. Meaning she had to stay another night. I just tell myself, keep pumping milk for her so that she have a lot of milk to drink. Then, the next day, her reading was 11.7. The doctor decided to discharge her. Phew!!!!

Two days later, I had to bring her back for blood test again. And the jaundice finally dropped! That's the best news I've ever got throughout my confinement. Before that, the doctor had taken her urine for test too. HHmmm, I'm wondering how they took her urine. The doctor says there's bacteria in her urine and they are waiting for second test result. They will call us once they got the result. If indeed there's bacteria, the doctor would want to get her stomach scan and check on her kidney too.

I got another good news today when the doctor call us and notify us that there's no bacteria in her urine and she don't have to go for scan or take any antibiotic. Phew!!

One thing I learn from this is that jaundice usually happens on Asian babies. Mother carrying blood type of O positive contributes to the percentage. I don't know if I should be proud or not that I'm O +ve. Also, for those who are pregnant now, do AVOID eat too much fried food. I asked the doctor too about food that I should not take while breastfeeding. According to the doctor, taking moderate quantity of ginger is OK, not too much. However, the intake of alcohol items (include white wine, red wine and Dome) is totally not advisable! So for those who are breast feed, do take precaution of what you eat. Jaundice in babies occur when the baby's liver is not fully mature yet and unable to work accordingly. When the alcohol intake that you took goes into your breast milk and fed to the babies, the baby's liver may not be able to process the alcohol. If your baby is small like mine, jaundice may strike too. My girl is born with the weight of 2.1 KG. I'm really surprise with the weight as I've gain a total of 15 KG but my baby is only 2.1 KG. 

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