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Thread: Breast surgery but want to BF

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    1

    Default Breast surgery but want to BF

    My Dr is concerned that I won't be able to BF because I had a breast reduction surgery about 12 years ago. I am 5 months pregnant and I am trying to decide if I should try pumping before the baby gets here so I will know for sure if everything is working properly. Does anyone have any suggestions or advice I could take into consideration? I really want to BF! Please help!
    Last edited by WardsHoney; November 29th, 2007 at 08:15 PM. Reason: forgot to add the part about my breast reduction sorry!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    43

    Default Re: Breast surgery but want to BF

    I am not an expert but I have heard that you should not try to pump or express milk of any kind while pregnant because stimulating your nipples can cause contractions. My midwife recommended pumping as a way to induce labor after my water broke but I didn't have any contractions. So, I would definitely not want to use a pump at 5 months!

    Sorry, but I don't know anything about how breast surgery might affect BF. Someone on here might have a better idea than me. I just thought I would answer what I knew. HTH!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    185

    Default Re: Breast surgery but want to BF

    I had a breast reduction surgery in January of 2005, not planning for kids for at least several years. I am now exclusively breastfeeding my 4 and a half month old son, and have since he was born (he was a surprise). I didn't know I would be able to do this until my milk came in 3 days after he was born. My only sign that things were working before the birth was that I would get a bit of white stickyness on my nipples. I was so slight, I thought it might just be sweat with dead skin, but it happened too frequently to not be leakage. I would say that I am lucky, because this is apparently not always the case.

    However, from the links about surgery from the LLLI site, I found out that if you have ANY breast tissue left, it will lactate and express, sometimes even in cases when the nipple tissue was completely disconneced. The breast tissue goes through a process called 'recanallization' where the milk ducts that were severed re-establish a route to the surface. This can take a while to do, and from what I understood from the articles I read, can be related to stimulation of the tissue to procuce, but that even if you can't support your little one 100%, you can definately give a significant portion, and possibly even work your way up, if not with this one, then with the next.

    Here are some links:
    http://www.llli.org/FAQ/surgery.html
    http://www.llli.org/NB/NBMayJun02p92.html

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    6,959

    Default Re: Breast surgery but want to BF

    The recanalization happens more with each birth. So if you have more you increase the odds that you will nurse without supplement. The human body is an amazing thing!

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