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Thread: My LC is out of advice! Blocked duct

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
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    Default My LC is out of advice! Blocked duct

    My lactation consultant has no more advice for me, and I'm at a loss! I think I have a blocked duct in my right breast. It was very full and hard starting last Tuesday. I did everything my LV suggested- hand expression, hot compresses, lots of nursing, pointing baby's chin towards the block (and in every possible direction), hot bath and hand express, manual pump, hospital grade pump, my own ameda and spectra pumps, ibprofen then nurse/pump/hand express (with heat in some form), intense massage, not wearing a bra, etc. I just ordered lecithin and will start taking when it comes tomorrow, but I though I know this will just prevent future blockages.

    All of my efforts significantly reduced the amount of milk in my breast. I think there is still a block. My breast is very soft except for a section of breast under my nipple on going up at 12 o'clock- which is firmer but not hatd by any means. I have always produced a lot in my right breast- 2 to 3x that of my left. I went from 4-6 ounces per pump in my right breast to 1.5-2 ounces. My nipple hurts a LOT when nursing. I have large size G breasts.

    I don't know what to do! I had a low fever (100.8) yesterday, but my LC attributed that to my cold (caught from my 4 month old).

    I'm currently working and pumping 3x per day at work. My LO nurses in the morning and at least 2x after work. Since the block, he's been waking up at night to nurse (he previously slept through the night). Not sure if this is bc of the block (he's getting less milk each time) or because he's got a cold.

    I'd appreciate any advice! I'm at a loss!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: My LC is out of advice! Blocked duct

    have you tried vibration and/or nursing while kneeling on all fours over baby? These both worked well for me. keep an eye on that fever and other signs of breast infection. Also, cold compresses rather than hot to reduce inflammation. http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...plugsblebs.pdf

  3. #3
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    Default Re: My LC is out of advice! Blocked duct

    I haven't tried vibration. I'll try that today. I didn't think I had anything to use, but I'm going to try my husband's electric hair clippers. I have tried cold compress and also dangle nursing, but those didn't help. I've tried to feel and find a specific lump, but I can't find anything. I'm worried there's already an infection and maybe that's causing swelling and preventing the block from releasing.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: My LC is out of advice! Blocked duct

    I may be missing something, but what specifically makes you think you have a plug? The supply decrease? The lump you're feeling? I'm wondering if you don't have one at all -- I was misled to believe I had one (by my LC and midwives) when I didn't. But with the fever, you may have trouble. But, also, my fever came on pretty quickly and knocked me out when I had mastitis.
    Mom to my sweet little "Pooper," born 10/12/11, and "Baby Brother," born 6/23/2014, and married to heavy metal husband. Working more than full-time, making healthy vegetarian meals for family, and trying to keep up with exercise routine.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: My LC is out of advice! Blocked duct

    My temp is normal right now. I think I had a plug because when it started last week, my breast was engorged in that area. My 4month old seems to get frustrated at times when nursing on the affected side- though he still nurses for about the same amount of time on each. What else could it be if it's not a plug?

  6. #6
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    Default Re: My LC is out of advice! Blocked duct

    So the issue right now is nipple pain and an area of hardness or rather "fullness" even directly after nursing, in an otherwise soft breast. Do I have that correct?

    I missed the part about nipple pain. Can you describe that more? Is it hurting all the time, just when baby nurses? Is there anything visibly going on with that nipple? A bleb? Blister? Cracks? flaking? redness/bright pink? Are you using any kind of nipple ointment or other nipple healing procedures-if that would even be appropriate?

    A breast infection would make you feel ill- fever, aches, no energy- like the flu. I don't think that having an infection would make the plug "harder' to release. Plugs just can be quite hard to release. I also wonder if you had several plugs (or one large one) and that you have cleared some of them/it, and it is just going to take more time with lots or frequent milk expression to clear it completely. My more pressing concern in the nipple pain.
    Last edited by @llli*maddieb; September 2nd, 2015 at 02:37 PM.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: My LC is out of advice! Blocked duct

    Maddieb-

    Yes, nipple pain with an area of fullness behind the nipple/areola and continuing an inch above. My nipple hurts when I pumped today- but not major pain. I just nursed my son and it was extremely painful. I kept him on though so he could help drain that breast. The spot was still there though. And it doesn't hurt when I'm not nursing/pumping.

    Unfortunately, I'm home sick with a cold/sinus infection so it's hard to tell what is the cold and what's related to the breast. My husband and I both caught our son's cold.

    No white spot/bleb on the nipple. None during this whole week this has been happening. Nothing visibly wrong with the nipple, and I haven't been using anything on it. The problem seems to be behind the nipple and not the actual nipple.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: My LC is out of advice! Blocked duct

    That was my thought that I cleared part of it. But I can't figure out how to clear the rest.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: My LC is out of advice! Blocked duct

    Sometimes it just takes time, from what you describe it sounds like there may be a very painful but small plug right behind the nipple? If this continues I am wondering if you want to see your doctor just to rule out any other potential issues.

    In my personal experience with plugs, sometimes all the efforts to clear the plug cause deep bruising that can make nursing painful for a few days.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: My LC is out of advice! Blocked duct

    My nipples always hurt excruciatingly when I have plugs; in fact, that's usually what first clues me in that I have a plug, not finding the hard spot! And yes, my whole breast usually feels bruised after its cleared, even if I wasn't very aggressive in getting rid of it. Was the original plugged area there behind the nipple? Sometimes I'll have a really bad plug that actually is a line of hard lumps stretching all along a duct from almost at my armpit down to my nipple, and it can take a while for all of those lumps to go away - maybe you had something similar and have cleared most of it, but there's still a bit left. I would be very careful, especially since you are sick already, to take it easy to avoid mastitis. As MaddieB suggested, I might consider seeing a doctor if it continues too much longer, just to make sure nothing else is going on.

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