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Thread: Have Mastitis: Really need support & encouragement

  1. #31
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: Have Mastitis: Really need support & encouragement

    with JoMo, whose title should probably be "Abcess Advocate" instead of "Ardent Advocate" since she has been through the wringer with that... (JK, of course- but I feel like she needs some props for what she went through!). AFAIK, there is absolutely no reason to think that you must dump the milk from the side with the incision. It's like mastitis: plenty of docs have NO IDEA that it is perfectly safe for a baby to nurse from a breast which is affected with mastitis, and that a nursing baby clears infection better than almost anything else!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  2. #32
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    Default Re: Have Mastitis: Really need support & encouragement

    I have a lovely LC whom I met at Harbor Hospital when I was having my baby. I'm not sure if she works out of Bethesda, April - her name is CJ (Christina Johnston). I have been giving her updates on what is going on and she's been extremely encouraging. I'll be meeting the breast surgeon later today and hopefully he'll give me good news (that the infection is going away). I've continued to pump both breasts, although it is very difficult since pus continues to ooze freely and soak me. I wonder if milk is leaking out (and not just pus), because I'm constantly putting in new pads in my bra (it gets soaked... sometimes I'd sneak a thick wad of paper towels in there as well). The milk looks very pure white when I pump, but gets ruined when the blood and pus leaks all over the pump and gets sucked in there as well. I've read everywhere that it was perfectly safe to feed that to the baby, but my OB/GYN had told me to wait a few days until the infection is under control. I've been using the "contaminated" breastmilk on my garden plants instead - beats dumping it out... at least now I'll have some very delicious (and sweet) tomatoes in the summer!


    Thanks for those links - I've done a lot of reading and hopefully things will improve soon. My biggest worry was my breast running out of milk - but I actually read articles where mother's had stopped breastfeeding completely, but were able to restart again later on?! Sounds almost impossible... I'm sure I won't get to that point, but it's a bit reassuring to see. If those mother's were able to restart milk production after completely stopping.. I'm sure I'll be fine if I don't aggressively pump or feed my left breast for a few days
    Proud of Baby

  3. #33
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    Jan 2011
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    Default Re: Have Mastitis: Really need support & encouragement

    It sounds like things are looking up for you, thats good . What kind of pads are you using? As I was reading your last post I thought would a maxi pad work better to soak up all the pus/blood you are leaking? Maybe then you would not be getting soaked every time. I certainly have never been thru this but just popped in my head.

    As long as you are still pumping you should not have to worry about re-lactating but there are a few women on here who have done it and I even think a couple that induced lactation, so there is always hope.

    Is your family being more supportive yet? If not then just ignore them all and come here when you need support, I have found this to be a great place for support/advice and sometimes even just a little venting.
    I am Klisti, I married my best friend Kris two years ago.

    The love of my life, Wyatt 8-28-11 AKA the little dude

  4. #34
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    Default Re: Have Mastitis: Really need support & encouragement

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*LaurenC View Post
    I actually read articles where mother's had stopped breastfeeding completely, but were able to restart again later on?! Sounds almost impossible... I'm sure I won't get to that point, but it's a bit reassuring to see. If those mother's were able to restart milk production after completely stopping.. I'm sure I'll be fine if I don't aggressively pump or feed my left breast for a few days
    It's not impossible. My own mother did it after being forced to wean due to medical issues. It takes hard work and a lot of pumping or nursing, and it is always better to maintain production than to try to restart it from scratch. So nourish your milk production the way you're nourishing your garden: tend it! (Which in this case means pump or nurse.)
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  5. #35
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    Default Re: Have Mastitis: Really need support & encouragement

    You might be experiencing some milk leakage in addition to pus. For me, it was very clearly milk, not just from appearance, but because it would gush out right when I would have a "let down."

    I used pressure bandages on my incision site to keep the leaking under control and help the wound heal. This involved making a gauze bandage, pushing it down on the incision site, and taping over it (helps to have a second set of hands to help with this, although I learned to do it myself). Then I would apply MORE pressure to the site while pumping or nursing, to discourage the milk from flowing from the site and encourage it to flow through the ducts instead. I would never have healed from my incision (or at least, it felt that way at the time!) if I hadn't done this religiously for weeks, in addition to slowly reducing (but never completely quitting) the amount of pumping/nursing I was doing on that side. Because a wound that is constantly leaking will not close up.

    However, I would definitely check with your doctor before doing anything like a pressure bandage in your case. I imagine you would want the wound to freely drain until the infection is cleared up. My incision was for a biopsy, so I had no infection associated with it, making my situation a little different.

    There is a big difference between stopping breastfeeding completely and coming back to it and backing off of nursing/pumping on one side. I did the latter to help heal my breast, slowly tapering off of my pumping/nursing, but I continued to nurse freely on my "good" side and occasionally on the "bad" side (twice a day at the lowest point). I had to be careful about backing off, as you should be too, because I too was prone to mastitis. So that reduction in nursing had to happen quite sloooooowly, just backing off a bit every day, and never, ever allowing my breast to become painfully engorged.

    Once everything healed up, I was able to reestablish nursing on both sides. It took a while to increase production on the healed side, but it did happen over time. That side, which had always been my "overachiever," never quite recovered that status, but it made plenty of milk. I went on to nurse for two years after my experience, so it can be done! One thing about having oversupply - your breastfeeding hormones are obviously strong and doing the trick - it's a lot easier for an OS mom to back off and then recover than it is for a low to normal supply mom.
    Last edited by @llli*joe.s.mom; April 19th, 2012 at 11:40 AM.


    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

  6. #36
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    Default Re: Have Mastitis: Really need support & encouragement

    I just wanted to send along my best wishes to you. That all sounds so horrible and I hope it is all resolved soon. Also, I want you to know that your story has helped someone. After reading this thread I have made pumping a priority at my work. I have been back a couple of weeks now. I was trying to pump a few times a day, but as I got back into things I began to get pulled in different directions and the scheduled pumping times kept getting later and later to the point I actually missed one one day. That will never happen again. Today I was on my way into a pumping session and one of my staff members asked me if I was busy and I said "Yes!" I didn't even break stride. This is very difficult to do since I work in a Psychiatric facility for patients who are highly aggressive. When someone asks if I am busy it is usually because they need me to help keep people safe. I just told myself that there are other people who can assist, but I am the only one who can pump my milk. I'm sorry you had to go through what you did and I hope everything gets better for you soon. Your story made a difference in my life. So, thank you!

  7. #37
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    Default Re: Have Mastitis: Really need support & encouragement

    Oh M11612 - definately don't forget to pump for an entire day! I really really do not wish Mastitis on anyone... it is painful, exhuasting and time consuming. Think of it as stabbing yourself a few times in the chest, followed by a burning sensation, as the pus oozes out of the wound - then calmly tell your coworkers you will be right back in 15 minutes!! Although I've felt really really guilty myself... I've stopped picking up work calls when I have to pump or do baby related stuff. The boss/coworkers are always telling me it's "one more quick thing"... but they don't realize how this "quick thing" turns into an entire afternoon and you end up having breast surgery. At the end of the day, the world will keep spinning as it leaves you in agony. It's not worth it!


    MamaDuMonte - that is a fantastic idea! Pads also have those sticky backs, so they'll stay nicely put in my cami/bra. I've been using a layer of gauze, topped with some thick bounty wipes. Unfortunately, I'm running out of gauze and been feeling too cheap to purchase another box The docter was kind enough to give me a small box for free, but that only lasted 2 days


    Joes mom - I'll definately ask him when I see him again in 5 days. Today, he told me to keep applying pressure on the wound/massaging it, so that the wound would continue to drain clear. I hope I don't run into the trouble of milk coming out of the wrong place and not letting me heal I honestly have not thought of that problem up until your post.... will definately have to ask next week!!


    As for family support... I've spoken with my mother, husband and mother-in-law about my decision to make this work and told them they had to support me. Afterall, this is for the benefit of our child/their grandchild!! They all think I'm a glutton for pain, but they've been a lot more supportive then before. My husband has even suggested setting the alarm louder, so I'd remember to wake up several times a night to pump


    As for my sister-in-law, she had 3 kids and did not even consider breastfeeding. In fact, the minute she had all of her children, she promptly dumped them at her parents house and went straight back to work - only seeing her kids on weekends. Seeing me in pain only confirmed her decision that "breastfeeding was bad." I've spoken to her and told her I was going to do the best for my child. I will give up ONLY when I WANT to give up. Since she comes to visit in the evenings sometimes (one of her daughters lives at my house at the moment)... I've had breastfeeding/pumping sessions where she would stand and watch... then literally tell me to stop.

    "You should just stop... look at that! Your daughter doesn't want your nipple."

    "You have no milk. Why are you breastfeeding?"

    "Look at that incision - it looks so painful. I'm so glad I didn't breastfeed."

    "It's not worth it - you are torturing yourself - you know you can just quit cold turkey and everything will go away in 3 days."

    "You don't have enough milk, see? Your daughter is still crying!"
    <--- I love this one. My daughter took 2 times to latch on and my sister-in-law was immediately on my case... telling me my daughter didn't want my nipple and that I should just give up. I couldn't even explain to her that latching on takes more then 1 try!!

    Then she watched as my daughter fed and told me I didn't have enough milk... that I was starving my child. Nevermind the fact that her peditrician JUST told me her weight was in the 90% of her age group! I got so tired of her lecturing, I forced a smile and asked her to make a bottle, since she thought my daughter was starving and not getting any milk from my breast. She practically pranced her way to the kitchen to warm a bottle of formula, then danced back to feed my daughter.

    Let's just say - I ended up laughing till tears were in my eyes, as my daughter refused to drink from the bottle and pursed her lips so tight, they were almost a invisible line! I had to tell her: "No milk my butt! She's so full, she won't even take a sip from the bottle!"
    Proud of Baby

  8. #38
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    Default Re: Have Mastitis: Really need support & encouragement

    Well, your SIL is totally full of it, but you are still a hero for pushing through this.

    But you won't regret it. I'm sure people thought I was nuts (my doctor thought I was nuts!) for wanting to breastfeed after getting breast surgery and having milk spilling from a wound in my breast, but I have never regretted it. The experience was hard, but at least I didn't let it take my breastfeeding relationship away from me. I think I would feel so much more bitter about it if I had had to quit. As it is, I only feel a little bitter ...


    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

  9. #39
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    Default Re: Have Mastitis: Really need support & encouragement

    Okay... dilemma! The breast surgeon prescribed some antibiotics for the next 5 days. When I asked him if it was alright to breastfeed, he said probably not – “the baby might get diarrhea.” My OB/GYN said it was probably alright, but didn’t sound confident. The lactation consultant said it’s fine…

    …so I have 3 professional opinions that go from no, maybe to yes! Not sure what I should do… maybe pump and dump for the next 5 days?
    Proud of Baby

  10. #40
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    Default Re: Have Mastitis: Really need support & encouragement

    Call Infant Risk: http://www.infantrisk.com/. They are really good at giving an informed answer about the safety of various medications.

    Most common antibiotics are safe for breastfeeding and do not require any pumping or dumping, though many docs err on the extreme side of caution and recommend pump and dump when mom takes anything more than a Tylenol. I've taken both Penicillin and Azithromycin (various derivatives and brand names) and never seen any adverse reactions in my babies- and yes, I told the docs I was nursing! Sometimes a baby will get diarrhea when mom is on antibiotics, but that's generally not a big deal.

    I'd tell your sister-in-law to $&#% right off. Her behavior is appalling. You probably don't say things like "You know, it's too bad you didn't nurse. How irresponsible of you to feed your baby a substandard substance" or "You had milk, why didn't you breastfeed?" to her, so where she gets off saying the things she's said to you...
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

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