Blue feet

A good friend of mine called me yesterday. Monkey and her boy were born only a week apart. She told me how her cousin just gave birth to a little baby girl. Lately, that baby girl's feet and hands have been turning blue and she is very jaundice.
I immediately felt alarm for this baby.
I asked if she had taken her baby to the doctor.
My friend told me that yes, she had, but the doctors told him "that's normal for babies", "she's just cold".

Bull crap.

I want to emphasize very clearly the seriousness of what I'm about to say: Blue feet and/or hands on an infant is not normal, and it is not because of the cold. It is possibly a sign of a heart problem.
I should know.

When we took Corbin for his first echo, the first thing the technician asked us is if his feet or hands ever turned blue. The answer was no but Corbin never showed any outward signs of a heart problem besides heavier breathing. Later on, specially directly after surgery, his feet would get very blue. This was a sign of poor circulation. (read more here)

I knew when Corbin was born that something wasn't right. His eyes were swollen and his breathing was heavy. I asked the doctors when he was born about it and they said "it's normal, nothing to worry about." Turns out, it was far from normal. The swollen eyes were a part of Williams Syndrome and the heavy breathing pointed to his Pulmonary Stenosis.

I am writing this to spread the word about heart problems in infants. Congenital heart defects are the most common defects in infants. (read more here) So please, please, please when something is off or your don't feel right about something concerning your child, keep asking your doctor. Get a second opinion. But don't let them tell you "oh, that's normal for babies" because a mother's intuition is no joke. 


mama to j and bean said...

Thank you, Ruth. This is important information for parents and so critical that we push back to get the help our kids need even when the docs aren't taking us seriously! always trust your gut!

Sheri E. said...

I didn't know that about the blue feet. When Dallin was 3 weeks old, the pediatrician thought he looked blue and that concerned her enough to recommend he see a cardiologist. That's how we discovered his pulmonary stenosis.

You are so right, when a mother is concerned, she should speak up and trust her intuition.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Ruth for helping spread awareness about heart defects. The only outward signs our little girl showed before she entered Congestive Heart Failure was her little blue feet and her horrible struggle with jaundice, she had a Coarctation of the Aorta so the entire bottom third of her body was receiving very little blood. Had we ignored our intuition she would have had a very different outcome!! I have been telling everyone that we know that has had a baby since then that blue feet need to be checked out...better check and it be nothing than to not check and deal with those consequences!

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