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Thread: Is full breastfeeding still possible for us?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
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    16

    Default Is full breastfeeding still possible for us?

    My name is Sara, and I had my seventh child, Madeleine, just over 2 weeks ago. She was 34 wks. 6 days when my water broke. I've previously breastfed six children without a problem- a relatively small problem with my 5th who spent a little time in the NICU, but we were able to straighten things up. Nothing like this.

    Brief overview of situation: Baby diagnosed with heart beat irregularities of unknown cause at 20 weeks, was too low from about 20-29 weeks, was hospitalized at 31 weeks until 33 weeks because she developed SVT with heartrate of 250 and hydrops (fluid retention that signifies congestive heart failure). Improved with treatment enough to where I was discharged at 33 1/2 weeks, but I started to develop swelling and high b/p- not drastically high blood pressure, but drastically large swelling- put on almost 30 lbs in less then 2 weeks. At 34 weeks 6 days had PROM and delivered by c/s due to transverse and cord positioning 3 hours later. Baby's heart was in normal range after water broke, but went back up to 200-ish , but within a few days was normal with meds. Had very few preemie issues except feeding. The day she was discharged, 14 days after birth< was re-admitted for urgent drainage operation on infected c/s incision, probably due to high fluid retention around abdomen. Sent home that evening. Still having breastfeeding difficulties (it took 7 days for my milk to come in)...despite pumping every 2-3 hours and taking herbs (fenugreek, blessed thistle, and oatmeal) and doing everything my IBCLC said and my nurse midwife at my peri's said. I'm beginning to think I can't keep this up and I will never be able to breastfeed her, esepecailly since she's still not latching on more then 3-5 minutes twice a day. One of her heart meds keeps her- not drowsy but very content nad hard to arouse. I can't stand beer, have bad side effects with Reglan, and can't afford the domperidone. I'm eating oatmeal for breakfast. Is it just too late? I've read that the stimulation the breasts get in the first 48-72 hours determine supply. Between a shortage of pumps at the hospital, severe post-op pain, and other factors, I wasn't able to do as much pumping as I should have. Is it tooo late?

    Any ideas greatly appreciated!
    ~Sara
    Happily married since 6/98
    Mom to 5 boys, 2 girls- Madeleine Claire born 3/29 @ 34 weeks 6 days

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    4,894

    Default Re: Is full breastfeeding still possible for us?

    It is not too late! 2 weeks is still so new. It took my daughter, a 33 week preemie, a month to latch for the first time and another 2 months to get it right. Just the fact that she has latched has you weeks ahead of me! It took my son 3 weeks to nurse. Keep at the pumping and trying to get her to the breast. Since you have experience you already know how valuable breastfeeding is. It just may take your little preemie some time. Give her that.

    Some suggestions. Kangaroo care as often as possible. If you can keep her in a diaper against your bare chest it gives her the opportunity to find your breast on her own and stimulate your milk. Start each feed at the breast. If she tires then pump and try again the next time. If you supplement be sure to pump to stimulate that feeding. I would make sure it's a hospital grade pump to get the best suction.

    Good luck mama. You can do this!
    If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun. - Katharine Hepburn

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    10,440

    Default Re: Is full breastfeeding still possible for us?

    When you pump, how much are you pumping?

    How long are you pumping and how often are you pumping or nursing?
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
    Posts
    17,465

    Default Re: Is full breastfeeding still possible for us?

    It's not too late. My milk didn't come in for 5days and we had no issues. You can totally still do it.

    Way too lazy for formula

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    21,120

    Default Re: Is full breastfeeding still possible for us?

    You can do it!

    I know hearing that milk supply is determined in 48-72 hours must have been hugely disappointing to you, but as far as I know it's not true. It's probably easiest to stimulate a good milk supply in the very earliest hours of nursing, but that doesn't mean you can't do it at a later time.
    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!"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
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    16

    Default Re: Is full breastfeeding still possible for us?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*aprilsmagic View Post
    When you pump, how much are you pumping?

    How long are you pumping and how often are you pumping or nursing?
    I'm pumping every 2-3 hours for 20-25 minutes ; I find I get more when I do every 3 hours though. From both breasts I'm getting 35-50 cc total a pumping. We're not really nursing at all, not anything worth mentioning- maybe a 5 minute time period or so.

    ETA- I'm also doing breast compressions/massage when pumping.
    ~Sara
    Happily married since 6/98
    Mom to 5 boys, 2 girls- Madeleine Claire born 3/29 @ 34 weeks 6 days

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    10,440

    Default Re: Is full breastfeeding still possible for us?

    Shoot for as often as you can manage to total 120 minutes a day. it seems like you get more if you go every 3 hours, but the more often increases prolactin receptor production. In the end, that is beneficial.

    It takes me at least 10 days to see an increase in production.

    Have your horns been sized? I found that I needed the largest available to maximize production.
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,120

    Default Re: Is full breastfeeding still possible for us?

    A lot of moms make the error of spreading out their pump intervals because they see more milk come out if they go longer between pumps. But it's probably better for supply to take out 1 oz every hour than 3 oz every 3 hours. The 2 keys to milk supply are frequency and intensity of stimulation to the breast and of milk removal. Pumping every 1-2 hours increases both, over all.
    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!"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,600

    Default Re: Is full breastfeeding still possible for us?

    Check out the book Making More Milk.

    Has anyone suggested an at the breast supplementer? (lactation aid?) This may help encourage baby to nurse longer at the breast, plus of course it allows you to supplement with your own expressed milk or formula at the breast, beneficial for many reasons. http://www.nbci.ca/index.php?option=...tion&Itemid=17

    Also you can keep working on bringing baby to the breast: http://kellymom.com/bf/concerns/child/back-to-breast/

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    16

    Default Re: Is full breastfeeding still possible for us?

    The SNS is 1. too clumsy for me to use, and 2. doesn't help w/ the problem of only staying on a few min. I can't nurse with SNS, then do the bottle feed for what she didn't get, then pump to empty out my breasts, then do the whole thing again in an hour. Too much, too much time.

    I've tried pumping every 2 hours for 2 days now, and now i don't even have enough to supplement her with more then .5 of an ounce. I'm ready to throw in the towel at this point...maybe it's just too late.
    ~Sara
    Happily married since 6/98
    Mom to 5 boys, 2 girls- Madeleine Claire born 3/29 @ 34 weeks 6 days

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