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Thread: Blocked ducts?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    15

    Default Blocked ducts?

    Hello!

    I posted a few days back about BFing/pumping, since then alot has gone down and I have a new concern, hoping for some help.

    I developed an infection in my c-sec wound that landed me in the ER, then the hospital for 2 days. They treated me with Vancomycin, and told me not to nurse for a few days, but to pump-and-dump to maintain my supply. They sent me home with breastfeeding-compatible antibiotics. So I've been pumping/dumping every 3 hours since I got home last night, which is really hard under the circumstances (pain from the infection site, etc.). But all would be well if it werent for...my left breast has all but completly stopped producing.

    I missed a few feedings the day I was in the ER for obvious reasons, but heck I didnt think anything could dry up that fast. Frankly both of my breasts are producing less, but the left is particularly troubling. I'm wondering if this is mastisis or blocked ducts. When I place my right nipple in the pump sheild (I use Madela Symphony) milk seems to be coming straight out. However the left seems to sort of 'seep' out from underneath the nipple at a very slow rate.

    How can I help lefty along? pump it solo? Any ideas?

    Thanks again in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    6,564

    Default Re: Blocked ducts?

    Wow. I am so sorry that happened to you. I had a c-section and can't imagine how much worse it would have been had the incision become infected. Your milk didn't dry up, you just might be having a hard time with the pump.

    Have you tried compressions? Mine do that too (the seeping), but I just squeeze them and the milk comes out faster. Have you tried eating oatmeal?

    Have you seen this link? It is about increasing pumping output.

    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/pumping/p..._decrease.html
    Tracie

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    20,852

    Default Re: Blocked ducts?

    Check out this link on mastitis and plugged ducts: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/mom/mastitis.html. It should help you sort out if either problem is an issue for you.

    To help lefty along:
    - Pump that side even more frequently than righty
    - When you get your baby back to the breast, try to start more feedings on the underachieving side, as babies suck hardest and empty the breast most thoroughly at the beginning of the feeding
    - Vary your pumping/nursing position to encourage maximum drainage of all areas of the breast
    - Watch out for plugged ducts/mastitis and treat them appropriately (see link above) if you see symptoms
    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!"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    736

    Default Re: Blocked ducts?

    Hrm, are you pumping each breast singly?

    When I first started pumping I'd bought an inexpensive pump that only pumped one side at a time. I didn't get much from either side really (even taking into account that I was just starting to come into my supply).

    However, I then shortly afterward rented a hospital grade double pump, used that for a month or two, and then switched to a medela pump in style double pump. I've read on numerous sites that you can get more milk when you double pump at the same time than when you pump first one breast than the other.

    Also, have you learned hand expression? It can be very handy, particularly when I had clogged ducts, which I got frequently. I'd have hard little balls of dried milk that would stop the milk from flowing and a few minutes of hand expression would frequently work them free and get the milk going.

    Don't feel too too bad though. I've often read that one side will produce more than the other. For me in the beginning they were both about equal, and then the left one started producing about 2+ ounces less than the other, and it was like you described -- the milk more weeped/dribbled out than came out in streams like it did on the right.

    Good luck, I know how frustrating it can be!
    Momma to K 05/24/07 (due 05/31/07)
    Momma to I, 06/04/10 VBAC'd (due 05/31/10). Read about it here

    Exclusive Pumper to first for 18 months.
    I got my VBAC!

    Struggling with nursing but one way or another breast milk is all they get.

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