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Thread: heartbroken with little hope of continuing

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    orange.county.ca
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    108

    Default heartbroken with little hope of continuing

    Hi, this is my first post though I have been reading this forum for the last week since my baby has had feeding issues.
    The bottom line is, I just stumbled across information about my breast condition that basically States I have insufficient mammary glands and thus cannot truly increase my milk supply past what I have now which is less than 8oz a day (and that's pumping about 10 times a day). I just came across this information in stead of being informed by a lactation consultant or my obgyn because I had a breast augmentation to correct the aesthetic problem. I had constricted or tubular breasts, something often associated with PCOS. I don't think I have Pcos, but I am now aware of the tissue deficiency associated with tubular breasts which I definately had...or have though they look a lot more normal with implants. So I apparently have fewer mammary glands than average women... or very few period. I have been working like a slave to increase my milk supply by pumping and breastfeeding and pumping more and I am lucky to produce an ounce in a 3 hour period. I am taking herbal supplements, the more milk special blend by mothers love...I am drowning in water, eating all the right foods, massaging, using warm compresses, having my son breast feed and then pumping... but no change in supply.

    I am really discouraged that this deformity is affecting my ability to provide the best nutrition for my baby, I was wondering if anyone has this condition or has heard ofwomen who breastfed successfully despite it. For now I will continue to pump and feed what I can get & supplement that for as long as I have milk, but I am so frustrated finding this information about my inadequate breasts

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    855

    Default Re: heartbroken with little hope of continuing

    dear DIYMOM,
    I am sorry that your ob/gyn did not inform you of the possibility that you might experience suboptimal milk production due to glandular tissue deficiency.
    there are mothers who feed supplements to their babies at the breast. these mothers use a device called a Lact-Aide or an SNS. Some mothers supplement with artificial baby milk, some obtain donated human milk.
    these mothers continue to experience the closeness and warmth of breastfeeding, and their babies do indeed receive mom's own milk in addition to the supplement.
    Your condition is rare and often times is not the first thing that comes to mind from mother to mother breastfeeding support groups.
    DD#1 July 1986 VB
    DD#2 April 1988 c/sec
    DS#3 April 1990 VBAC
    DS#4 June 1993 VB
    and suprise!
    DD#5 April 2001 c/sec
    BTDT scars and stretchmarks,: wrinkles and grey hair

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    1,293

    Default Re: heartbroken with little hope of continuing

    i am sorry you are having a tough time mama.

    how old is your lo? are you nursing or just pumping? what are the diapers like? and weight gain?

    are you still working with a LC? if not i would recommend getting in touch with one, preferable an IBCLC.

    if you do have less tissue then we can work with it and you can still have a beautiful nursing relationship, even if you supplement.

    here is a sitethat has information on breast surgery. hopefully someone else has info specifically on tubular breast tissue.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Shakedown St.
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    1,176

    Default Re: heartbroken with little hope of continuing

    All I can say is that I'm sorry. I think seeing an IBCLC is a good idea to maximize the amount of nursing you can get in.

    You are a champ for toughing it out. Remember that every ounce your son receives from you, no matter how small it seems, is extremely important for his health. Nursing is about comfort and bonding too, so just having him at the breast is also important. Your dedication and hard work to do what is best for your son is truly commendable!
    K. Sophia - Mama to my little lactivore, the amazing Mr. X (11/10).

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    19,905

    Default Re: heartbroken with little hope of continuing

    For women with true insufficient glandular tissue, success may be something that they have to redefine. Success at breastfeeding isn't an all or nothing thing- if a mom can manage to provide only part of her baby's diet, she is still providing baby with the best she can. 8 oz a day is so much better than 0 oz per day!

    Since you had an augmentation, you might want to check out this forum: http://bfar.org/index.shtml

    ETA: you may want to go back to the doctor who suggested you had tubular breasts- there may be additional information about whether or not the "deformity" was simply superficial or whether there was actual lack of glandular tissue.
    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
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    10,440

    Default Re: heartbroken with little hope of continuing

    I have a couple mamas with IGT I've worked with. One quit early becasue she was frustrated. Another has managed for quite a while. She tried the SNS but it bugged her. She gives a little bit of formula, then nurses, and if baby needs a bit more, she tops him off. She has nursed this baby longer than any of her others, and it was because she redefined her success. For her, this time, nursing for comfort and not sustenance was OK, and he gets more from her than she thought he would.

    Don't measure production by what you pump. And that was important for this mom to get too. I'd been telling her that for weeks, but she finally got it. It was more important to look at baby and see what he needs.

    Don't give up. Any you provide is great, and the comfort provided by baby is priceless, and you simply fill in the blanks. That is what formula is for...for those moms who cannot nurse 100%, despite all they can do.
    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!

  7. #7

    Default Re: heartbroken with little hope of continuing

    I agree with pps. 1) Milk production capability has many variables. To say you will never be able to make more than you think you do right now is simply not neccesarily the case.
    2) Even if you do not produce enough to exclusively breastfeed, you can still breastfeed and give baby supplemental feedings as needed, and you have many options on HOW to provide those supplements that may enrich your experience.
    3) even if you produced no breast milk at all, you could possibly feed your child at the breast using an at the breast supplementer aka lactation aid. A mom I know did this long term with her adopted baby when she found she was unable to induce lactation.

    Not only is every drop of breastmilk a benefit to a baby, every moment spent nursing at the breast has benefits as well. Physical as well as psychological and emotional.

    I suggest the books "Defining Your Own Success: Breastfeeding after breast reduction surgery" (I realize this is not exactly your situation however I think the perspective provided my be valuable to you.) Also, Making More Milk and The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding (8th edition.)

    Have you connected with a local LLL or other breastfeeding support group? You are likely to meet other moms who have/are having struggles with supply for one reason or another.

    What about meeting with an IBCLC with experience helping mothers with low milk supply?

    I am really discouraged that this deformity is affecting my ability to provide the best nutrition for my baby, I was wondering if anyone has this condition or has heard ofwomen who breastfed successfully despite it. For now I will continue to pump and feed what I can get & supplement that for as long as I have milk, but I am so frustrated finding this information about my inadequate breasts
    It must be so hard to think you cannot make enough milk for your baby. So frustrating, it must seem so unfair. But you ARE providing your baby with so much wonderful nutrition and so much more by nursing as much as you can. You are also providing your baby with so much more by being a loving and responsive mother, whether you nurse or not. And no matter what happens, remember that your baby loves you and needs you, and thinks you are perfect, every inch of you, including your body and your breasts, just the way you are.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    orange.county.ca
    Posts
    108

    Default Re: heartbroken with little hope of continuing

    I have a sad update, despite all the measures I am taking to produce more milk, I am producing less each day. I went from 1 oz each pumping every couple hours to producing 1/2 oz each pumping and now to less than 1/2. It hardly seems worth it to get all the equiptment dirty for a few drops of breastmilk. Yesterday i was down to 4&1/2 oz and today I am down to 2&1/2 oz in the last 24 hour period. I have done a few feedings just on the breasts but i cant imagine he is getting much more than fractions of an oz with his laxidaisical sucking.

    I am worried because my son at 2 weeks was still 5 oz under his birthweight and i can only get him to eat (from what i can measure) 10-11 oz in 24 hours. He weighed 8lbs 1 oz at birth. He is 16 days old now and he is wetting and dirtying his diapers sufficiently. Do babies ignore food if they are still hungry or fall asleep at the breast constantly if they need more food? I try to give him more formula but he always falls asleep during feedings or stops eating. I hope this means he is getting enough food.

    I am meeting with my hospital 's head lactation consultant Monday and renting a hospital grade pump on Monday. I also started drinking mothers milk organic herbal tea and am continuing with the other supplements and drinking lots of fluids and eating all the foods... do people still dry up despite all these things or am I doing something wrong?

    I have been using and will continue to use a sns or whatever they're called to feed him on the breast, its the only consolation I have since supplementing has been necessary...seeing my baby on a bottle always makes me cry.

    I am considering buying breastmilk when and if i dry up though its so very expensive and will become more so as the demand goes up...is buying someone else's breastmilk ok for feeding my baby, does anyone have experience with this or know of any good donors? Would it even make a difference if it were only comprising a third of his diet?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    855

    Default Re: heartbroken with little hope of continuing

    I am so happy you looked back at this message board.
    Your baby is still young, 16 days old,
    I think from the many breastfeeding mothers I have known over 26 years of being connected to La Leche League you will be amazed at the difference a hosptal grade breastpump can make at producing more milk.
    Oh please do not lose hope for yourself. Milk production this early on is still adaptable to an eager nurser and a uber-powerful breast pump.
    You can help your lo catch-up weight wise by nursing/feeding him every two hours or more if need be.
    If you are supplementing with a bottle, do that first and then offer the breast.
    You might want to just double check w/ your ob/gyn to make sure there is no retained placental fragments, as that also impacts milk production.
    DD#1 July 1986 VB
    DD#2 April 1988 c/sec
    DS#3 April 1990 VBAC
    DS#4 June 1993 VB
    and suprise!
    DD#5 April 2001 c/sec
    BTDT scars and stretchmarks,: wrinkles and grey hair

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

    Default Re: heartbroken with little hope of continuing

    Check into Human Milk 4 Human Babies. LLL does not endorse milk sharing, but it is an option some mothers look into.
    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!

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