We’re here again – hospital adventure part two.

10.38. Today’s nurse didn’t seem to care whether we ended up sitting with a bunch of possibly infectious children til I pointed it out, so now we’re in a room at least. No cot, so again I’m pleased I brought the car seat in. We’re on the appt board today, name spelt wrong obviously, so at least there appears to be a plan. Not that anyone is carrying it out.

This place just seems to be disorganised, without anyone having a real clue what is going on.

10.50 nurse came to weigh him, and took us to scales that only display one decimal point. Pointed out that they won’t even show up the weight gain the doctor is looking for and then dissolved in tears, about not knowing what is going on, and the doctor saying giving up breastfeeding and just everything. Returned extremely promptly to my room without weighing him and nurse gone in search of a doctor to explain what is happening.

11.05 We finally see a doctor. Who seemed completely uninterested in seeing Tigerboy, and was very much there to see me. Apparently all the blood test results were back and absolutely normal, so it’s felt he has breastmilk jaundice. I quoted a figure of 10% of breastfed babies still being jaundiced at 1 month, doctor didn’t know :( What he was concerned about was the slow weight gain – both doctors appeared to be convinced that breastfed babies put on a steady 30g (or 1 oz – which is it then??) a day, which is not my understanding of how it works at all. At this stage I pointed out (again, having already mentioned it to the nurse) that the scales they are using don’t go that accurate. He didn’t seem to know anything about that, saying that as long as his weight hadn’t dropped he was happy for us to go home and continue with feeding.

Lots of questions about feeding, again the suggestion that I express so that I can see what he’s getting. It disturbs me that so many health professionals seem to know so little about feeding and the mechanics of it that they recommend expressing as a first response instead of recommending that you see an expert who can evaluate the feeding.

Nevertheless we did the weighing (heartstopping moment when the scale looked to be reading 3.5 which would have been a loss, then it went back to 3.6. Phew.) and then we were cleared to go home.

11.44 after a feed (obviously) going home.

This whole experience has been demoralising and stressful. The doctor I saw on Tues night seemed to be implying there was a high risk of something seriously wrong – today’s just as obviously knew all was fine. Which made me very cross that he’d left me worrying, and dragged me up to the hospital just to weigh Tigerboy on scales not suitable for the purpose, costing me fuel, parking and time, meaning we missed Smallest’s swimming lesson too. Not to mention the NHS time and resources that were wasted.

Obviously if there’d been a need for us to see a doctor I’d have been very happy to go up there, but there really wasn’t. And I should have been focussing on feeding instead of being undermined and carting car seats around hospitals.

I will be making a complaint. I’ll put it up here too.

And thank you so much for all your support. Here, elsewhere, twitter and texts – you’ve been my lifeline.

About Jax Blunt

I'm the original user, Jax Blunt I've been blogging for ten years, give or take, and if you want to know me, read me :)

Comments

  1. So sorry it was another difficult day but am very pleased for you that all is well.
    Doctors/health professionals seem to know very little about breastfeeding/ breastfed babies. I could write a list of ridiculous things said by health professionals about breastfeeding.Ignore them all, get proper advice and support. I can recommend Alison (commented on your last post)- she was fantastic in helping me breastfeed.

    • Thanks Carol. The lack of knowledge is utterly terrifying, and goes a long way to explaining why breastfeeding rates are so low in this country.

  2. antoinette . (@divasupermum) says:

    don’t you have a baby clinic in the doctors, most do, sounds very stressful going to the hospital, hope baby ‘s ok

  3. Oh Jax, hugs for you and Tigerboy. There used to be a Breast feeding cafe in the hospital run by La Leche league or NCT (can’t remember). If they’re still around they might be able to give advice and support for any future visits… x

  4. So sorry you’ve had to go through this. Definitely see if you can find a good breast-feeding support group, but it sounds like you’re doing just fine and have come up against people who don’t know what they’re talking about. The trouble is, most health professionals are still working on the basis of expected weight gain for bottle-fed babies and find it very difficult to adjust to or even understand the differences with breastfed babies. And as with much of the NHS, it’s a postcode lottery as to whether you find somewhere where they’ve got it right or not. I went through so much hassle with weight gain/loss with both my girls (who are and have always been very healthy, while also quite small) that, if I were to have another, I would not get them weighed at all.

    I hope you are able to settle down now and concentrate on you and baby, without going back and forth to hospitals.

    T xxx
    Tasha Goddard recently posted…Vegetarian and vegan seasonal Easter feasts: Part Two: Main coursesMy Profile

  5. Oh Lord, that sounds like the usual lack of communication. Not stress that you need. Hope that you get some rest today.

    To be fair to the hospital, it can be the case that not quite enough milk is responsible for slow weight gain. That was the case with child no.1 in this house. But, as others have said, first port of call should surely be somehow who knows a lot about breastfeeding – not clueless hospital docs! It’s great we have docs at hospital for when we need ‘em though ;-)

    Can you get some day-to-day support for a couple of weeks, Jax? Can your partner get leave of some sort (no idea what he actually does, I’m afraid!) and give you the chance to spend a few days just one-to-one resting, feeding and catching any sun that’s around? Having the other kids out of the house for a few hours might help you to relax more fully. Knowing that all the work isn’t waiting for you alone and that people are out and won’t be demanding food and entertainment, might give you a chance to rest more too.

    Not meaning to boss! Take care.

  6. Alison Sauer says:

    So they are looking for a 30g increase a day in scales that measure in 100g increments? Genius!

  7. Alison Sauer says:

    Take yourself to bed for the weekend for a nurse in. Do you the power of good.

  8. Sounds like your hospital is staffed by morons! How they can be encouraged to promote breastfeeding yet know so little about it is beyond me, not to mention weighing a baby on scales that aren’t fit for purpose! Makes me glad they don’t routinely weigh babies here, I don’t get the “he weighs too much/too little” rubbish like I did with my daughter that used to drive me insane. So glad little Tigerboy is ok and hopefully you won’t be making any more trips to the hospital x
    MumReinvented recently posted…14 weeks oldMy Profile

  9. Alison Sauer says:

    Is Tigerboy dropping through percentiles on his chart? Or is he following a curve? Does he feed at least 8 times a day? Is he perky when awake? Does he have plenty of wet nappies? These are all types of questions that will tell you if the feeding is going well.

    The 30g is an average but is an average over a week or so with an average weight baby.

    Breastfed babies when the breastfeeding is going well will actually often gain quicker than formula fed ones.

    • He hasn’t established a curve yet, only been weighed three times. As to the rest, yes we get alert periods, plenty wet and dirty nappies.

      I’m guessing as he’s well below average in size expecting him to put on the average amount regularly is somewhat unreasonable. I’m just hoping for some gain before next Friday.

  10. They don’t support mums enough! When my son was born he couldn’t latch. He ended up getting very dehydrated. From this he got fissures and we spent the net 4 years with problems that could of got a lot worse. If they had someone to help in the first place it would of stopped all the medication and appointments he has had since! I was in a room on my own, over 30 degrees with no aircon and had to go and get my meals myself at the other end of the ward with a newborn. I’m glad you have got the all clear and that you can carry on being a good mum.
    SusanD1408 crochet addict recently posted…I’ve Made Friday Week 3My Profile

  11. So sorry you are having to go through all of this. I had to give up breastfeeding at 3 weeks due to my kidneys and possibly if I’d gotten the support or a doctor who knew more I may have been able to carry on. It was so unfair you were left thinking there was something seriously wrong. Hugs x
    Susan Mann recently posted…The Funny Things My Children Say…My Profile

  12. I’m so sorry to hear this: you’ve all been having a very tough time indeed – and for no reason. Sending lots of cheering thoughts for a restful weekend. X

  13. I’ve not been a lifeline, I’ve been crap. Sounds like a terribly worrying episode. I had a bit of a do with my youngest when I wasn’t b’feeding properly. I thought I had it all sorted after B’feeding my eldest till she was 2 1/2, but S wasn’t v keen at latching on and preferred to sleep – they said he wasn’t gaining weight as much as he should either. I had terrible paranoia and worried that I was starving him – but it did work out in the end when he got better at feeding. I think you coped fabulously with all that and you are right to be annoyed. Anything like this is terrifying with a little baby. Hugs and hope everything is nice and calm now. x
    kay wilkinson recently posted…Cosy Musings From a CaravanMy Profile

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