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Thread: Hypoplasia?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
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    Default Hypoplasia?

    My daughter had tongue tie revision today and while in the office the Dr (whom is a breastfeeding advocate and possibly a LLL leader? LLL member at least) Said that it looked like I may have hypoplasia. I had never heard of this and was surprised. She said that I should keep it in mind if I have future children and to see a lactation consultant before hand to make sure we get the breastfeeding relationship off to a good start.

    I looked hypoplasia up and am questioning her, but maybe I'm just being defensive because I don't want it to be my fault that breastfeeding is soooo hard. Is anyone here knowledgeable about hypoplasia? I looked at pics and read the markers for it and I do fit some of the categories, though the pics didn't resonate for the most part.

    Here is the list from KellyMom:
    [B]widely spaced breasts (breasts are more than 1.5 inches apart)
    -at my chest my breasts have 1" between them. Though they do sag / lay against my chest and the space widens obviously as you move away from my chest wall.

    [B]breast asymmetry (one breast is significantly larger than the other)
    -I've always had one breast larger than the other. As an adult they evened out relatively, especially when I lost weight. My baby refuses my smaller breast so my milk in that side is almost dried up. This has caused a fairly significant difference right now. My nipple on that side is less sensitive so I assumed it was causing slow let down and her disinterest, but maybe I do have less glandular tissue on that side and that plays a role?

    [B]presence of stretch marks on the breasts, in absence of breast growth, either during puberty or in pregnancy
    -I gained like 80 lbs with my last pregnancy. My boobs have stretch marks now. My boobs grow with weight gain. At my thinnest weight my boobs were a large b small C. Now I'm an E (at least on the big side).

    [B]tubular breast shape (“empty sac” appearance)
    -I have ptosis of my breasts. They sag and point downward. When I was thinner this was not as bad.

    [B]disproportionately large or bulbous areolae
    -I have large areolae. They are not bulbous.

    [B]absence of breast changes in pregnancy, postpartum, or both
    -My breasts have never been full or perky. They grew during pregnancy, but I gained significant weight. After I had the baby I was engorged so they were definitely larger.
    However, with my first baby my boobs never got engorged. I do remember my boobs were slightly bigger, but not as big as they are now. But my daughter was failure to thrive by 4 mos so I don't think my milk came in fully? idk. We had a traumatic birth, early supplementation for jaundice, possible undiagnosed tongue tie..etc.. there was a lot going against my first daughter and I's breast feeding relationship.

    Any thoughts on this? My daughter is not gaining weight as quickly as I feel like she should be. I was hoping this was the tongue tie, but am wondering if there's more to it. My baby is almost 8 mos and I still feel like I'm beating my head against a wall when it comes to breastfeeding. It has been so easy for all of the other women in my family it seems like
    Last edited by @llli*rnc620; June 24th, 2014 at 10:08 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
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    181

    Default Re: Hypoplasia?

    I know nothing about hypoplasia, but try not to take it personally. Even if that is the issue or it is a contributing factor, it is not your fault! It's not like your breasts were a bad purchase choice at the mall

    In the same way you wouldn't say it's your daughter's fault she had tongue tie.

    You do have to work with the equipment given and while at first it seems negative, actually the fact an LC can get your next bf relationship off to a good start and your doctors has an LC is actually pretty good!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    5,585

    Default Re: Hypoplasia?

    I agree about not taking it personally! Even if this is part of the problem, which is unknown, This is a physical issue you have zero control over. No ones fault.

    Hypoplasia is a possible indicator a mom will have difficulty with milk production. POSSIBLE. Not definite. It possibly affects milk production 1) because this breast appearance MAY indicate that breast tissue never developed fully and 2) the question is why-did the mom have hormonal issues from the get go. Because hormonal issues can also cause poor milk production.

    To look at a woman's breasts and say "you have such and such breasts and that means you may not make enough milk" sounds harsh I guess. But this IS info you can possibly use, now and in the future. But certainly, there are many many reasons a mother may not make enough milk and many many additional reasons a baby may not gain well (or as well as some think the baby should.)

    If you have been having so much difficulty nursing your daughter, have you ever been seen by an IBCLC? Because she would (hopefully) not only look at you but also take a full medical history and history of your development and then, if she thought there was some underlying issue that might cause poor milk production, help direct you to galactagogues or other milk production increasing techniques that may help in such situations. Since you have had difficulty nursing your children, I think seeing an IBCLC and lining up as much breastfeeding support as possible is a good idea, hypoplastic breasts or no.

    For lots of information about all aspects of milk production, including this one, I would suggest the book Making More Milk. It is inexpensive and written for mothers. The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding (8th edition) also has a brief discussion of breast tissue insufficiency. I will go ahead and quote a little bit
    "But appearances can be deceiving! Some women with breasts that fit these descriptions have nursed babies-even twins-with no problems at all. And since nursing tends to build breast tissue, the simple act of nursing tends to increase the amount of milk we can make, for this baby and for future babies." WAB 8th edition, 2010, page 382.
    Last edited by @llli*lllmeg; June 25th, 2014 at 12:26 AM. Reason: got confused

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Hypoplasia?

    You are obviously producing some milk so you do have some breast tissue at work.
    Poor latch due to tongue tie, lip tie or possibly other oral muscle problems in the baby that cause poor milk transfer not only cause mom pain but can also hinder mom's milk production. Remember if milk isn't effectively removed the breasts won't know to make more.

    If tongue tie and lip ties and other oral issues are not addressed really early on, they often require some therapy to help baby learn to use the muscles right after being corrected. Mine got his tongue and lip ties corrected at 8 weeks but it took another month to finally find some one who could help with the therapy, we are now seeing a speech therapist who is experienced in working with infants. It is hard being on the feed/supplement/pump treadmill and it sometimes seems so unfair when it seems so easy for others.
    Remember that in some cases, it isn't actually so easy for others but you are only seeing them when things are going fairly well.
    Also remember that you have given your baby your human milk and any amount is better than none so you have succeeded in that. Don't beat yourself up about the things you really can't control, just do your best to concentrate on the things you can improve. Seeing an IBCLC may also help you figure out a plan that can work for supplementing/pumping etc if that is necessary since pediatricians rarely consider preserving what breastfeeding relationship there is when they push supplements.

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Hypoplasia?

    Hypoplasia is something which is impossible to diagnose from the shape/size/spacing of the breasts alone. And if you go engorged early on, that's an indication that you are more than capable of making sufficient milk, as long as the conditions are right.
    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
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    Jun 2014
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    Default Re: Hypoplasia?

    Thanks ladies. I know I shouldn't blame myself, but it kind of feels like your body is failing you when things aren't going the way you want them too. As of right now, I have never had to supplement with my second daughter (she'll be 8mos next week). When my milk came in and I was engorged, able to pump extra milk, and actually could feel the let down, I was so excited. Then as my daughter's weight gain started slowing at 4 mos, the fear and self doubt crept back up.
    LLLMeg is the one who suggested tongue tie, which I appreciate so much! I felt like maybe it wasn't by body failing again after all and maybe I could be one of these women that breastfeed past 1 even. However, the dr kind of deflated me when she pointed out my potential physical issues. I am hoping she is wrong.
    We are only 24 hours post tongue tie revision so hopefully weight gain picks up and my milk production increases. The dr suggested I pump after feedings 3 times a day to increase milk (spending 10 minutes on my full breast and 15mins on my low producing milk). she suggested I continue fenugreek, which I had been tapering off of. And she suggested I take B6 (or was it B12?) for my raynauds. Hopefully these things help.

    Honestly, a big part of the upset is just thinking there is something else physically wrong with me. I'm at that age point where you start noticing things wrong with your body, which once seemed invincible. I'm glad to hear that you cannot dx hypoplasia based purely on physical traits. I would say I don't fall obviously into any of the pictoral categories shown on the many websites I've seen for hypoplasia.

    I do fall into the 'everything in between' category shown on this page;
    http://diaryofalactationfailure.blog...es-of-igt.html

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Hypoplasia?

    You have gotten this far so if you are determined there is little to stop you continuing hypoplasia or not.

    Pumping can definitely help increase supply as can breastfeeding more often, especially if latch improves (this could still take work for muscles to re-learn a more effective way to work though.)

  8. #8
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: Hypoplasia?

    Honestly, a big part of the upset is just thinking there is something else physically wrong with me. I'm at that age point where you start noticing things wrong with your body, which once seemed invincible.
    I hear you, mama.

    This website always makes me realize that my body is awesome, despite its sags and bags and failures: http://theshapeofamother.com. It's not that I look better than the women pictured on the site, but rather that I look similar to them in many ways. No woman is as flawless as an airbrushed 15 year-old on the cover of a fashion magazine- and no-one should feel like they have to be!
    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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