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Umbilical Cord Clamping

July 10, 2009

When to clamp the umbilical cord has always been an interesting topic to me.  Some moms, doctors and midwives have heard to wait to clamp and others have never head of such a thing.  It seems to me that there would only be benefit to wait until the placenta is delivered before clamping and cutting the umbilical cord.

For alot more info on umbilical cord clamping, visit  gentlebirth.org.

Newborn lungs exist in a “compacted state” suitable for the womb. When the infant is born, the placenta and umbilical cord pulse for up to 20 minutes, delivering a burst of blood volume to the infant’s system. This blood burst is just what is needed for the lungs of the newborn to expand.

Unfortunately, many hospitals and doctors don’t understand the mechanics of this and are engaging in early umbilical cord clamping — often within one minute of birth!

For more info on birth injuries (related to clamping the umbilical cord too early)

Without the burst of blood from the placenta, the infant suffers a drop in blood pressure as its lungs fail to open as they should, creating a chain reaction of effects that can include brain damage and lung damage. Immediate umbilical cord clamping can cause hypotension, hypovolemia and infant anemia, resulting in cognitive deficits. Some have even theorized that the rise in autism could be linked at least in part to early umbilical cord clamping.

Dr. Joseph Mercola comments that

“When a baby is born, one of the first procedures performed is the clamping and cutting of the umbilical cord. In hospitals, this task is often done before 30 seconds have elapsed because it’s believed it will reduce the mother’s risk of excess bleeding and the baby’s risk of jaundice.

Very often cords are clamped early also to collect cord blood and cord stem cells to be used for various medical and commercial purposes.

However, research is increasingly revealing that clamping the umbilical cord prematurely, before two or even three full minutes have elapsed, robs your baby of much-needed blood and oxygen.

Today there is absolutely no consensus about the optimal time to clamp the umbilical cord after birth, yet over 200 years ago in 1801, Erasmus Darwin (Charles Darwin’s grandfather) shared some wise words on the topic that have been largely overlooked:

“Another thing very injurious to the child, is the tying and cutting of the navel string too soon; which should always be left till the child has not only repeatedly breathed but till all pulsation in the cord ceases.

As otherwise the child is much weaker than it ought to be, a portion of the blood being left in the placenta, which ought to have been in the child.”

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20 Comments leave one →
  1. Liz (just researching my options permalink
    December 8, 2010 8:41 pm

    I am appalled! Thank you so much for posting this. I have recently done a lot of research and am of course planning on having several natural childbirths in my future. My mother told me she planned to have her future grandchild’s umbilical cord stem cells frozen so they could use them later in life if they need a transplant of any sort. However, I did some MORE research to find that I am sadly once again losing my faith in any and all white-coat practices!! Your quote reminds me of more methods our “doctors” have been blindly educated against!!

    • theCmom permalink
      December 9, 2010 11:14 pm

      You are most welcome. Be blessed in your adventure of life 🙂 And always remember that it is your body and the choice really is yours, never stop asking questions.

  2. Linda Morge permalink
    October 25, 2009 3:38 pm

    Hi! Have you noticed that the URL of George Morley´s cordclamp.com has been stolen by a cord blood harvesting company?

    The new webb adress is http://cordclamp.org/

    • theCmom permalink*
      October 29, 2009 8:33 am

      Thanks! I’ll change the link 🙂

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