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Newborn and Infant Care

Amniotic fluid in newborn stomach

09/12/2006

Question:

Someone has already asked a question about a newborn vomiting amniotic fluid which I`ve read. This situation sounds similiar to the one my granddaughter is experiencing however, she has already had her stomach drained twice and when it was drained a third time - 12 hours after her birth, the nurse removed 5cc`s of fluid from her tiny stomach. Is it normal for the infant`s stomach to keep filling back up with fluid after it`s already been drained?

Answer:

It is possible that all of the fluid was not removed the first 2 times. Five cc is only 1 teaspoon of fluid, so it would be easy for a tube to miss a small amount of fluid at any one time. This is the most likely reason. Other reasons that are more serious include the presence of an intestinal blockage that is not allowing fluid in the stomach to progress into the intestines and secondly there is the possibility of a tracheoesophageal fistula that is permitting lung fluid to drain into the esophagus and down the esophagus into the stomach.

It's a good idea to bring your questions to the staff caring for the baby. They know the mother and baby's histories and have examined your new grandchild in detail. They will be your best source for information on whether or not this is a serious problem. I hope it is not and that all of her family members will soon be able to breathe a sigh of relief and enjoy welcoming her into the world.

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Response by:

Mary M Gottesman, PhD, RN, CPNP, FAAN Mary M Gottesman, PhD, RN, CPNP, FAAN
Professor of Clinical Nursing
College of Nursing
The Ohio State University