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Umbilical Cord Infection

If the cord gets infected, it is not the fault of the parent.  Cleaning the cord with alcohol has not been proven to prevent infections and is more to clean it so it does not look and smell bad. The purple antibiotic that is put on it at birth keeps it from getting infected.   The cord is dead tissue like the placenta and is "rotting" off.  So when it separates, it normally smells bad and drains pus and bleeds red blood on the diaper.  That is old blood and not from their active arteries.  What one should look for is redness around the cord as in this picture. Go to the emergency room if you see this redness extend away from the cord.  I've seen one in 24 years.  It isn't going to happen!!! and if it did, it isn't your fault!!!   Just clean the cord up with alcohol when it is wet or draining stuff.  There really is not a set number of times a day.  If it is clean and dry, leave it alone.   Clean it up when it needs it.

Infected umbilical stump:

umbel.jpg (58686 bytes)