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Can I breastfeed with Hepatitis B?


The Brazilian Society of Pediatrics recommends breastfeeding even if the mother has the hepatitis B virus. Breastfeeding should be done even if the baby has not yet received the hepatitis B vaccine. Although the hepatitis B virus is found in the mother’s milk infected woman it does not exist in sufficient quantity to cause the infection in the baby.

Babies born to a woman infected with any hepatitis virus should be immunized right at birth and again at 2 years of age. Some doctors argue that the mother should not breastfeed only if she is infected with the hepatitis C virus and should resort to powdered milk until the doctor releases her to resume breastfeeding, probably only after having had blood tests to prove that she has already there is no virus in the bloodstream or it exists in a minimal amount.

Treatment of the baby with hepatitis B

The treatment of hepatitis B in the baby is indicated when the mother has hepatitis B during pregnancy, as there is a high risk of the baby becoming infected with the hepatitis B virus at the time of normal delivery or cesarean section due to the baby’s contact with the baby’s blood. mom. Thus, the treatment for hepatitis B in the baby consists of vaccination against the hepatitis B virus, in several doses, the first of which takes place within the first 12 hours after birth.

To prevent the baby from developing chronic hepatitis B, which can cause liver cirrhosis, for example, it is important to respect all doses of vaccination against hepatitis B that are part of the national vaccination plan.

Hepatitis B vaccine

The hepatitis B vaccine and an immunoglobulin injection should be administered within 12 hours of delivery. The vaccine boosters take place in the first and sixth months of the baby’s life, according to the vaccination booklet, to prevent the development of the hepatitis B virus, preventing diseases such as cirrhosis in the baby’s liver.

If the baby is born weighing less than 2 kg or before 34 weeks of gestation, vaccination should be done in the same way, but the baby should take another dose of the hepatitis B vaccine in the 2nd month of life.

Side effects of the vaccine

The hepatitis B vaccine can cause fever, the skin can become red, painful and hard at the site of the bite, and in these cases, the mother can put ice on the site of the bite and the pediatrician can prescribe an antipyretic to lower the fever, as children’s paracetamol, for example.

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