Intended for healthcare professionals


Preventing late bleeding in infants with vitamin K deficiency

BMJ 1998; 316 doi: (Published 17 January 1998) Cite this as: BMJ 1998;316:230
  1. Win Tin, Consultant paediatriciana,
  2. Unni Wariyar, Consultant paediatriciana,
  3. Edmund Hey, Reired consultant paediatrician, for the Northern Neonatal Networkb
  1. aSouth Cleveland Hospital, Middlesbrough TS4 3BW
  2. bRoyal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 4LP

    Editor-The wisdom of using intramuscular vitamin K has become an issue for debate again. Oral and intramuscular prophylaxis both prevent early bleeding, but oral prophylaxis is poor at eliminating late bleeding (between 8 and 90 days after birth) unless treatment is repeated at intervals (1 2-a finding consistent with evidence that intestinal uptake is improved when babies are offered several small, rather than fewer large, oral doses of vitamin K.3 It is also consistent with the suggestion that intramuscular prophylaxis works not because it bypasses poor …

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