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Thread: plugged duct(s) - tried everything?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Fairborn, OH
    Posts
    38

    Default plugged duct(s) - tried everything?

    For the last couple days, I've had a major plug/series of plugs in the top of my right breast, going pretty much from my nipple to the top of my breast where breast tissue ends. Since it's at the top, I can't easily position my 6-week-old's chin to point toward the block to help unclog it. I have tried
    • massaging the plug before, during, and after breastfeeding
    • pumping (but there are some plugs I can't get to under the shield)
    • warm and cold compresses
    • dangle nursing
    • nursing in side-lying, clutch, and cradle
    • lecithin
    • vitamin c
    • expressing and massaging in a hot shower
    • warm, moist compress during feeding
    • massaging and expressing while soaking breast in a warm bowl of water
    • using the back of a electric toothbrush to massage the breast (also tried this during pumping)
    • nursing as often as possible from the right breast
    • using cabbage leaves
    • trying to suck it out myself, trying to have husband suck it out (last resorts!)


    I'm afraid that mastitis in inevitable at this point. Hoping someone has some extra ideas I haven't read or heard about yet. LO is not getting much milk from that side at this point, and I'm sure nursing her every time on both sides so she gets enough is doing wonders for my oversupply on my left side! Please help! Thank you in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Fairborn, OH
    Posts
    38

    Default Re: plugged duct(s) - tried everything?

    I would also like to mention that when she nurses, she often looses suction and makes a clicking noise. LC check for tongue-tied but said it didn't look like it. It seems like maybe since I have OALD that she's just suck the milk off the nipple and being lazy. Of course, that doesn't help get the plugs out. I saw something online about suck/finger training. Anyone have more information/videos that show this so that I can try to improve her latch and sucking?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,406

    Default Re: plugged duct(s) - tried everything?

    Plugs do not necessarily lead to mastitis, just as you can have mastitis and recover from it, and still have plugs.

    To ward off/ help treat mastitis, "empty breast, lots of rest." Nurse very frequently & try to rest, eat right, keep drinking to thirst-try to keep from getting overly run down physically. If you start getting aches, chills, fever, consider anti-biotics.

    I had a gigantic, hard to get out plug when my now 11 month old was a newborn. It was on top of my breast and as large as my hand. I used a personal massager my husband got at the drugstore for me. Same principle as the electric toothbrush but larger, and possibly more hard vibration, more effective (?) (Not sure because I never tried electric toothbrush.) I REALLY went to town with that thing because I had had this Moby plug for several days, had mastitis, recovered from mastitis, and STILL had the dang plug. The vibration is to break the plug up, so it takes some going at it.

    Also, since nothing came out at all when I pumped, even with a hospital grade, I encouraged baby to nurse extremely frequently to prevent more plugs.

    Have you tried bringing baby over your shoulder to nurse upside down-it is possible, esp. if you lie way back.

    The only other idea for plugs I know of that you do not list is ultrasound.

    Jack Newman has some videos they may be helpful, and Catherine Watson Genna wrote THE book on sucking skills.

    But I would suggest seeing an IBCLC for suck training and/or plugs that simply will not go away. These are very unusual situations.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Fairborn, OH
    Posts
    38

    Default Re: plugged duct(s) - tried everything?

    Thanks for your reply. I was able to get her over my shoulder, actually tried both shoulders, but she was to the left or the right of it, never right on it. The distance between my breast and head is shorter than she is.

    She was nursing from the right side about every hour it seemed, and I did some more massaging and using cabbage leaves and I was able to get some of the plugs out. It's not nearly as big and painful, but it's still there. I saw an LC today and will see one again tomorrow to hopefully figure out why she doesn't maintain the good latch she has. I'm hoping if we can get that figured out that the plug will more easily work themselves out.

    Thanks again.

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