HELP! THE CORD CAME OFF AND IS BLEEDING

HELP! THE CORD CAME OFF AND IS BLEEDING

I field umbilical cord care questions every day. The problem is that the cord has a kind of wide end as it dries (from the clamp) which is easily caught on things like a diaper. If it gets knocked/ripped off too early it will inevitably bleed. It’s no surprise that a bleeding belly button in a brand new baby causes parents a lot of stress. The good news is that it is generally not a big deal and nothing to be worried about. I see it so frequently, that my guess is that it happens at least half the time. Simply clean it with an alcohol swab, apply a little pressure (if it’s bleeding a lot), then leave it alone. Don’t put any fancy creams, ointments, or dressings/bandages on it. It will form a new scab in a few days and the new scab will fall off when the belly button is healed.

I shot this pic in clinic this past week to show you what the new scab will look like. This one is healing nicely.

umbilical-cord from clinic

-Featured photo courtesy of www.123rf.com. The other photo courtesy of a really nice mom in my practice that let me snap a photo.

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About The Author

Dr. Monica Wonnacott

I'm a pediatrician and a mom. I've been doing this doctor thing for 10 years, and love it. I'm known for giving parents the straight scoop without always sugar-coating it. And I believe in educating parents. The more you know, the better care you give your kids.

Dr. Monica Wonnacott


I'm a pediatrician and a mom. PediatricAnswers.com is my blog where parents can get the straight scoop on their child's health, largely based on my experience in the office and at home. I don't diagnose on the site, so please don't ask. These are just my opinions. Use this site as a resource. And trust your parent gut.

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