Cholostrum/breastmilk as eye treatment

  1. Does anyone have a reference for using cholostrum or breastmilk in place of antibiotic ointment? I know I have heard of it and read about it. But all I can find now is for eye infections. Nothing specifically mentions prophylactic treatment for newborns.

    I had a pt the other day wanting to use cholostrum instead of the Ilotycin ointment that we use, which of course, caused an uproar in the NSY. When I mentioned to the nurse manager that it wasn't uncommon, she said I'd be interested in learning more about that, can you find some articles. Me and my big mouth.
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  2. 30 Comments

  3. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I don't see WHY. Among my patients, if they are in a lowrisk population, most will just protest eye treatment at all. Why use breast milk? I dont; see the point, really.
  4. by   BittyBabyGrower
    Can't help you, but many holistics do use this and it is very common in other countries to use instead of eye ointment.
  5. by   L&D_RN_OH
    Quote from SmilingBluEyes
    I don't see WHY. Among my patients, if they are in a lowrisk population, most will just protest eye treatment at all. Why use breast milk? I dont; see the point, really.
    Most of our pts don't protest it. So when they do, the NSY has a fit. I think thsi couple that requested no treatment, were planning the breastmilk as an alternative, since they knew the anitbiotic ointment is "required". But the NSY nurse made such a big deal about it, they gave in.

    it wasn't just that, with this particular couple. They wanted to postpone the bath, but the NSY RN presented it to Dad in such a way that he thought the baby could not come out to Mom w/o a bath so he gave in to that too. The baby was only in theNSY because it was tachypnic. I had planned to transition at the bedside. To top it off, the baby's BS was 44 (not critical). This same nurse told Dad she was going to feed it even though I just told her it was a breast baby. Luckily, Dad told her no, mom wants to bf. Baby nursed. She checked the sugar 20min later (40min sooner than the protocol states). When the baby's sugar was 37, she ended up giving it formula anyway. :angryfire Of course, 30min later the BS was 56. But was that because of the 30 cc of formula, or the 20min of nursing?

    I've had problems with this nurse before, feeding my breast babies for borderline sugars, w/o talking to the parents first.
  6. by   SmilingBluEyes
    We don't have fits if patients refuse eye treatment (or any other tx). All they need do is sign they refuse tx after being informed of medical benefits/rationale as to why such therapy is recommended. Why get do your nursery staff get all in a wad over it? It's their right to refuse, after informed refusal to consent. This is true of all medical procedures anyhow.
  7. by   L&D_RN_OH
    Quote from SmilingBluEyes
    Why get do your nursery staff get all in a wad over it? It's their right to refuse, after informed refusal to consent. This is true of all medical procedures anyhow.
    That's what I would like to know. Apparently, most of them don't even know you can refuse it. But I looked up the policy for them for future reference. Our nursery is like neonatal detention. The nurses are the wardens, and they decide what can and can't be done to "their" babies. They seem to think that once the babies are in the nursery, the Nsy staff has total control over it. Part of it, is that we don't have a well baby nsy, so transistion is done by SCN. So they are used to having control over their babies. It's unfortunate that we have to fight with them to advocate for our pts, but many times, that's what we must do.
    :uhoh21:
  8. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Lord that is a shame. Glad it's not like that where I am. But then, most of us LDRP nurses also do NURSERY (level 2) as well. We are fairly well cross-trained and there is NO holding infants in a nursery for any reason other than medical need. They stay with mom 24/7 otherwise.
  9. by   mitchsmom
    I refused eye ointment w/ #3 because I knew I didn't have any infections and it made my first two babies' eyes very red and irritated. I asked my Ped about it ahead of time and he said there wasn't really any other reason to do it if I didn't have any infections so it was no big deal.
    I didn't put breast milk in his eyes but I do know of a lot of people who do it if the baby has a clogged tear duct/infections, etc. and to my knowledge it usually has worked for them. The breastmilk has antibiotic properties.
    I'm not sure but you can look around here and see if it is addressed here:
    http://www.geocities.com/breastfeedinglinks
    Here is a link about Healing with Breastmilk, includes a link to Clinical Uses of Banked Human Milk - fascinating!:
    http://www.kellymom.com/health/illne...reastmilk.html
    Before I wean my toddler I would like to apply breastmilk to half of a cut sometime and see if that half heals faster! I bet a million bucks it will
  10. by   Betty_SPN_KS
    I used breastmilk for one of my home-birthed children. I wouldn't have used anything except his eye got yucky after a few days. I tried cleaning it with saline (worked for older kids on other occasions), but it wasn't working. I asked my lay-midwife about it and she suggested using my breastmilk. That cleared it up in a couple of days.
  11. by   nurseunderwater
    Quote from Betty_SPN_KS
    I used breastmilk for one of my home-birthed children. I wouldn't have used anything except his eye got yucky after a few days. I tried cleaning it with saline (worked for older kids on other occasions), but it wasn't working. I asked my lay-midwife about it and she suggested using my breastmilk. That cleared it up in a couple of days.
    Me too! Yea for homebirth!

    I have a lot of mama's in my circle of friends that use it for everything...burns, ear infections, cuts and scrapes.....
  12. by   nurseunderwater
    Quote from L&D_RN_OH
    . I had planned to transition at the bedside. To top it off, the baby's BS was 44 (not critical). This same nurse told Dad she was going to feed it even though I just told her it was a breast baby. Luckily, Dad told her no, mom wants to bf. Baby nursed. She checked the sugar 20min later (40min sooner than the protocol states). When the baby's sugar was 37, she ended up giving it formula anyway. :angryfire Of course, 30min later the BS was 56. But was that because of the 30 cc of formula, or the 20min of nursing?

    I've had problems with this nurse before, feeding my breast babies for borderline sugars, w/o talking to the parents first.
    :angryfire oooooooo, This kind of thing really makes my blood boil. This nurse needs to read "Birth An American Right Of Passage" by Robbie Davis Floyd - Slip it in her bag for me - It's a very educational piece re: baby as the hospitals "product", which is obviously how she sees these NB's.
  13. by   L&D_RN_OH
    Quote from SmilingBluEyes
    Lord that is a shame. Glad it's not like that where I am. But then, most of us LDRP nurses also do NURSERY (level 2) as well. We are fairly well cross-trained and there is NO holding infants in a nursery for any reason other than medical need. They stay with mom 24/7 otherwise.
    I hope that someday we can cross train to do bedside transistion, but I know it will be a long hard process. We just cross trained for PP. And man, the long time L&D nurses were not happy.

    We promote 24 hour rooming in, and encourage it as much as possible. Unfortunately, many parents prefer to send their newborns to the nsy for the night. They think they'll get to sleep in the hospital if baby is in the NSY. Well, hello, that's only 48 hours at most. What are you going to do when you get home?
  14. by   Betty_SPN_KS
    Quote from nurseunderwater
    Me too! Yea for homebirth!

    I have a lot of mama's in my circle of friends that use it for everything...burns, ear infections, cuts and scrapes.....

    lol. I never thought or heard of that, but I used it for sore nipples.

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