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Thread: Sore lumps in Breasts, much uncertainty

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    4

    Default Sore lumps in Breasts, much uncertainty

    Greetings All,

    I have been battling engorgement, and have still a couple of hard lumps in myu breasts that will not go away.

    I use hot compresses, I get my baby to feed at strange angles so that her chin points to the lump to draw it out.

    The feeding is getting more stressful for us and the lumps are only marginally reduced for only a short period of time.

    So many things interconnected: At first I was trying to wake her because she was sleeping a lot. Then I was told to let her sleep and let her tell me when to feed. Then she started sleeping for longer and longer and my breasts started getting engorged again.

    Now I am trying to wake her more. Yesterday we woke up in the night after 6 hrs! And in the day we went another 4 hrs. When she wakes up after these she is completely freaked out and starving.

    Feels good to cry.

    Carrie

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    1,168

    Default Re: Sore lumps in Breasts, much uncertainty

    Oh, you poor thing! Yes, it does feel good to cry. Let it out, hon!

    I remember the first time my son slept 5 whole hours at night. When he woke up, he nursed frantically, like a man who staggers out of the desert gasping, "Water!" (or, in this case, "Milk!")

    How old is your baby?

    The scattered hard lumps that will not go away sound to me like more than engorgment -- they could be clogged ducts. Warm moist heat is good, massaging the breast is good -- the baby will also become more skilled at helping get those clogs out and draining the milk behind them. If this situation continues, or if they go away but keep coming back, then there may be other factors at work and other steps you can take.

    My favorite link for clogged ducts and mastitis is this one (not a LLL resource, but reliable breastfeeding info):

    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/mom/mastitis.html

    Good luck, and let us know how you're doing today.

    --Rebecca

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Charleston SC
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    2,601

    Default Re: Sore lumps in Breasts, much uncertainty

    Hi there,
    Yes, it does sound like plugged ducts, you def want to get that milk out of there so that you do not get a breast infection. Do you have a pump? If she maybe you could just take a little off of the top, NOT a whole feeding. You do not want to tell your body to make more milk than your little one needs.
    Also you may want to stick to more frequent feeds during the day, every 2-3 hours and then no loner than 5 at night for a tiny baby. Be sure to watch the diaper out put, 6-8 wet ones and 2-3 poopy ones.
    You sound like you have more than enough milk, a much better issue than not having enough! All the best to you!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    10,440

    Default Re: Sore lumps in Breasts, much uncertainty

    I suffered a lot from clogged ducts in the first 8-9 months, since I produce enough milk to feed a third world country, LOL

    With the help of a LLL leader, I finally figured out that it could be from a little too much saturated fat in my diet, which kept contributing to clogged ducts since I had such a huge supply.

    I would hop in the shower and let the hot water stream over my breasts, and I would then start massaging away at them until milk flew all over. When I got out, I would continue massage, and particularly massage them when nursing, as well as doing what you are doing. Hot compresses/heating pads also helped. It usually took a couple days to get rid of one, and there was residual soreness for another day.

    Nurse a lot to get the milk out of the clogged ducts, and that may mean you wake the baby to nurse for a few days and then gradually back off so you don't get engorged and clog up again.

    My local LLL leader also recommended lecithin, but we got to that point after trying a lot of other things.

    Good luck!!
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Sore lumps in Breasts, much uncertainty

    Thank you so much all.

    Gemma is 18 days old today.

    We are nursing 2 - 2.5 hrs which means we wake her up. Gemma is much happier, lumps don't get any worse. Continuing the hot boob treatments. I hardly have any saturated fat in my diet but I will watch egg yokes and the odd bit of cheese.

    The pumping and emptying the breast issue has been tricky. If I pump too much the breasts create too much milk. Trial and error.

    Is it usual that ducts would get clogged in both breasts?

    What a relief to just have people to talk to. My family is not around, not that they have had experience with breast feeding anyways.

    On the Kellymom web site they mention that the "point the chin to the lump" advise is a bit outdated given that the route of the milk ducts can be quite circuitous, and not linear.

    hmmm

    Thank you again all

    Carrie and Gemma

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    1,168

    Default Re: Sore lumps in Breasts, much uncertainty

    Try taking lecithin supplements, too. I don't remember the dosage, but the kellymom link probably gives it.

    So glad you are finding support here -- keep us posted.

    --Rebecca

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    10,440

    Default Re: Sore lumps in Breasts, much uncertainty

    Quote Originally Posted by carrieabresch
    Is it usual that ducts would get clogged in both breasts?

    I did. I either had a clog in both at the same time or would get one in one, clear that one up, and then have one on the other side a few days later.

    Regarding saturated fats, I didn't think I had much either and was within recommended limited amounts according to the nutritionist. But once I really got to looking at my diet, I could find places to cut it, and that did help. I was able to go back to normal eating when my supply evened out.

    Can't remember the lecithin dosage. Try kellymom.com or ask an LLL leader.

    It will get better
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    4

    Default Warning: LONG POST-Sore lumps in Breasts the saga continues

    Thank you all again,
    An update from the lumps.

    A lactation consultant came over and felt the lump. there has been virtually no change in them at all. When she squeezed them they didn't change. she said that a clog would tend to temporarily empty. These didn't. Also they are very circular and hard. About the size of a Canadian Loonie (silver dollar?)

    So she said she didn't know what to make of them. She suggested that we get an ultrasound.

    My midwife agreed, but suggested homeopathic doses of Phyolacca, which I checked out with my homeopathic doctor and he agreed, but both said that if in a day or two nothing changed then go my family physician and get an ultrasound.

    So that is where we are there.

    As far as the breast feeding is concerned it is an ongoing journey.

    The lactation consultant said that I was not emptying each breast enough and I should go bacck to the same breast if Gemma wants to feed within 2.5 or 3 hrs again. She showed me how to tell if the really heavy hind milk was coming (by squirting/squeezing the nipple)

    She said that Gemma is getting lots of sugary for milk which is fattening her up, but it is causing gas in her tummy. the hind milk will help. Also she tends to get hungry faster because the sugary stuff digests quickly.

    Her goal for me is to reduce the number of feedings, reduce the milk supply buyt make the quality of the milk higher. She wants to get me down to 8 feedings a day (Gemma is 18 days old )

    So all this is different from what I'd been reading and been told.

    Now Gemma is kind of pissed when she is forced to work harder for the hind milk on the second feeding on the same breast. If Gemma stops sucking then I am to squeeze milk into her mouth to get her to swallow, and to tap her jaw if she doesn't. Gemma is not really into this program. She is a little lazier than that. Feedings are not the "loveydovey" experiences they are supposed to be. Often ending with both of us frustrated.

    Which is the lesser evil I wonder?

    I think Gemma needs to gradually learn/be taught to work a little harder for the hind milk (The lactation consultant is pretty strict about what she means here. Not just "more opaque than the initial milk" but milk that is so thick it will not squirt if you gather and pinch your areola. It will only bead beccause it is so thick.

    I will give this another 3 days I think. (doubling up on same breast for two feedings if within a short time frame, and trying to get Gemma to work harder for the heavy milk.

    Thank you if you took time to read this.

    Love
    Carrie

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    43

    Default Re: Sore lumps in Breasts, much uncertainty

    i too had gassy babies (2) and had to force the one breast for 3 hours then the other for the next 3 hours. No one tols me bfing was such hard work, but once you get the hang of it... I think of it as tha lazy man's way since I was bfing and babysitting a formula baby at one point in my mommy career... You must also remember you have never done this before and not many of us (I know not me) has met or seen another mother nurse before we embark on this adventure.

    I hope all gets better and until then remember this is not just a help board, but a friend board when no one else is around (I do not know another bfing mother where I live and only know of 2 other sahm"s)

    Good Luck and let us know

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