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Thread: Purple nipples after pumping??

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Pepin, WI

    Default Purple nipples after pumping??

    I am an EP and have been for about 5 weeks now. So far things are going pretty well but I have a few concerns. I am pumping about 6 tiimes a day for about 1/2 hour each time but I have pumped for as long as an hour. Usually when I am done pumping my nipples are kind of purple, is this normal? I am not feeling any pain during pumping but my nipples are very mildly tender and usually remain a darker pink throughout the day. (Just a side note, I have a Medela Pump In Style BP and I use it on the lowest setting. I also use 24mm shields. I did the dime test because some of my areloa was being pulled into the shield but it was really close. I thought the 22mm shield would maybe be TOO small and I am still pumping a decent amount of milk with the 24 mm shield. Also, I did treat myself and baby for thrush with gentian violet because I thought that may be an issue). One of my breasts was a little itchy so I thought what the heck, let's rule that out. We had latch issues from the beginning and that is why I EP. I have been nursing more often and latch is getting better but it seems if I nurse 2-3 times a day my nipples are getting sore, but not sore like they were initially, just kinda chapped feeling. My nipples are not nearly as pinched as they had been but I am wondering if they are just getting sore again because I have increased the nursing and they are going through that adjustment period. Also, is there just always going to be some trauma to the nipples when using a pump?? Sorry this isn't very organized but I feel like I could write a book with all the details about my breastfeeding history:-)

  2. #2

    Default Re: Purple nipples after pumping??

    when you say pumping 30 minutes each time, do you mean 30 mins each breast or total? i'm pretty new at pumping myself but i've been advised that only pump about 10 - 15 minutes for each breast and not to volume.

    good luck.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2009

    Default Re: Purple nipples after pumping??

    First off, you're not alone!

    From my understanding, when I went to my LC about similar issues, she said that the purple is nothing to worry about. When they turn white, that's a sign of a vasospasm (restricted or cut off blood supply to nipple.) A sign that the breast shield does not fit correctly. IMO as long as they aren't painful, and you have a comfortable fit, theres no problem. The blood rushes the area due to the pumping motion and causes the discoloration.

    Good Luck! I hope that helps!

    **Remember, even if you are pumping and not getting anything, it is still stimulating your body into producing more! So don't just stop when your let down is done! For me, I pump 25-30 min every 4 hrs while i'm at work. Sometimes I'll only get 4 oz, but I still go for the whole time, to not confuse my body. It's definietly a demand/supply relationship!
    Last edited by @llli*3bfboys; February 8th, 2010 at 11:32 AM. Reason: wanted to add info
    Military momma to four breastfed boys

    Jason '06
    Jonah '07
    Jackson '09
    Joshua '11

    I'm definitely.....

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