Rare Disease Found In 4 Nashville Children - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Rare Disease Found In 4 Nashville Children

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by Shannon Royster

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Four Nashville babies were all diagnosed with Vitamin K deficiency bleeding, or what's called VKDB and doctors say it can easily be prevented.

Cheyenne Garcia just gave birth Thursday to a brand new beautiful baby girl.

Just like all babies she received a few shots, one of them being a vitamin K injection.

"I had no idea what it was, but I'm glad she got it," said Cheyenne.

She heard about the four Nashville parents who declined the injection. It left their babies with gastrointestinal bleeding and intra cranial hemorrhage.

Dr. Robert Sidonio, an assistant professor of pediatrics at Vanderbilt Children's Hospital said he knows all too well what can happen when parents opt out after treating the babies of the four Nashville families who did. He said Doctors have been aware of the problems for some time now.

"So we've known about vitamin K deficiency and its association with bleeding probably since the 1930s," he said.

In 1961, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommended the vitamin K injection at birth.

"Since then, said Dr. Sidonio, multiple studies have shown that the risks go down from one percent or one in 100 people down to about one in a million people."

But he added, due to multiple myths like a link to leukemia and exposure to toxins, the percentage rate of parental decline in the state is up at about 25 to 30 percent.

"We know the more parents who continue to decline this we're going to continue to see more cases," said Dr. Sidonio.

Garcia however said she didn't have to think twice about it if it means keeping her baby healthy.

"It's very important," said Garcia. "She's number one."

The vitamin K injection is given by default in most states for the protection of the baby unless a parent declines it. In some states however the injection is required. Tennessee is not one of them.

As for the babies in Nashville with VKDB, all of them survived. One made a full recovery and the other three may one day suffer from untreatable brain problems.

Email: sroyster@newschannel5.com
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