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Thread: Stringy milk

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
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    83

    Default Stringy milk

    I have been having problems with stringy milk when I've been pumping. At first, it was just the right breast then the left. I thought it was a plugged duct, but I don't have any pain, redness or lumps. Then the left started having it as well and I thought it was because of the open wounds I had at that time.

    But the wounds have healed but the stringy, clumpy milk is still there and it would pass from one breast to the other. So I sought help from an IBCLC and she said I have an infection. I got a prescription for Keflex and it soon cleared up. The problem is, it came back 3 days after I finished the prescription. What could it be? Has anybody experienced this before?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    NY
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    Default Re: Stringy milk

    I have it AFTER a plugged duct clears. The milk is just much thicker and therefore stringy. Sorry I can't be of help.
    Mom to Samuel J.
    born 7lb. 10 oz. and 22" tall
    on Saturday, October 19, 2013.

    My breastfeeding experiences: http://www.breastfeedinghacks.com/

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    24,794

    Default Re: Stringy milk

    Stringy milk may be normal. Remember, the milk we get at the store has been filtered, pasteurized, and homogenized. And ask any dairy farmer and they will tell you that the filter that strains the milk before it goes into the collection tank is full of weird clumpy milk stuff (as well as cow hair and grass!).

    As long as you are not plugged or in pain, I would consider this normal, but also something to keep an eye on.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
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    Default Re: Stringy milk

    No pain but it doesn't pass thru the nipple so I would have to strain it prior to feeding her. It's as if pumping isn't already enough work! Since I can't seem to get past the pumps in the refrigerator (big time germaphobe) I wash my pumps after each use and it does get tiring sometimes that I have been dropping a pump once in a while.

    My dr said he doesn't recommend giving me another dose of antibiotics and he can't really give me a direct answer as to what is causing it exactly. I don't think I have a plugged duct... Do I?

  5. #5
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: Stringy milk

    If you don't feel one, then no, you don't.

    How does pumping and nursing feel?

  6. #6
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    Jun 2009
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    10,754

    Default Re: Stringy milk

    What if you use a nipple with larger holes? If you are using paced bottle feeding positioning and technique, which is the recommendation for all bottles, using a slightly faster flow nipple should be ok.

    Also, The clumps or strings do not break up enough to pass through the bottle nipple if you swirl or shake it? I know they say don't shake a bottle of breastmilk, but really, that is the ideal, and sometimes the ideal is not attainable. Even shaken milk would still be good for your baby, just try to shake/swirl as gently as you can while still getting the job done. Straining breast milk, which is way more work, is probably not the 'ideal' either. (Although clearly a good idea on a dairy farm-thanks for the visual mommal )

    paced bottle feeding links: info: http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...astfedbaby.pdf video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UH4T70OSzGs
    Last edited by @llli*lllmeg; August 10th, 2014 at 09:54 AM.

  7. #7
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    Jun 2014
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    Default Re: Stringy milk

    It doesn't go away with swirling the bottle at all. I'm afraid that her stomach will not be angle to tolerate the stringy milk so I want to avoid is as much as I can.

    I just wanted to know if it is a bacterial infection that came back.

  8. #8
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: Stringy milk

    I'm afraid that her stomach will not be angle to tolerate the stringy milk so I want to avoid is as much as I can.
    You might want to give her a single unstrained bottle and see if it affects her. If not, no more need for tiresome straining!

    I just wanted to know if it is a bacterial infection that came back.
    It definitely could be. The only scientific sources I have pulled up on stringy/clumpy milk are from dairy science, and they seem to converge on 2 explanations for the issue:
    1. Bacterial infection causing the milk to form slimy plaques
    2. Traumatic mastitis caused by rough milking- which is why I asked about how pumping and nursing feel.

    I think this is a watch and see situation. If you end up with another case of mastitis, then that's an indication that there was something bacterial going on all along. If not, then you just continue to keep an eye on it.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
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    Default Re: Stringy milk

    I never got mastitis. Can u get mastitis without pain/lump/redness?

  10. #10
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    10,754

    Default Re: Stringy milk

    So I sought help from an IBCLC and she said I have an infection. I got a prescription for Keflex and it soon cleared up.
    If you never had mastitis, what was the antibiotics for? Mastitis means a breast infection. How was the infection diagnosed? Did you have a fever? or this was totally on the basis of the milk?

    Sometimes a mom has a "subclinical" infection. But usually there would still be SOME symptoms I would think???? http://kellymom.com/bf/concerns/moth...rent-mastitis/

    I'm afraid that her stomach will not be angle to tolerate the stringy milk so I want to avoid is as much as I can
    But if you were not pumping and bottle feeding, and instead, baby was nursing at the breast, she would be getting this milk and you would not even know it. And even when a mom has a milk plugs or is trying to clear a plug, or mom has mastitis, it is perfectly ok to nurse baby. The milk does not hurt baby.

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