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Old 08-26-2011, 04:07 PM   #1
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Breastfeeding and Surgery-help!

So I'm getting my wisdom teeth out under general anesthesia in a few weeks and I asked my oral surgeon about nursing after the surgery. He told me I needed to pump enough for 48 hours!

DD is 4 months old, ebf, and she will take a bottle, but usually not for more than one or two feedings in a row. We just don't use them enough. Also, I don't know how probable it is that I'll be able to pump 2 days worth of milk. I can barely get anything out when I pump these days, unless DD goes more than 3 hours without eating, which is rare.

Anyway, does anyone else have experience with nursing and surgery? 48 hours seems REALLY LONG to me. I looked up some stuff online--other dr's say 24 hours, some LC's say only 3-4 hours... I'm confused! Any help/advice/resources would be so appreciated!

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Old 08-26-2011, 04:32 PM   #2
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Re: Breastfeeding and Surgery-help!

Kellymom is written by an IBCLC who references Thomas Hale, who knows
more about medications and breastfeeding than anybody. Here's what Kellymom says:

Quote:
General anesthesia should not affect breastfeeding. You can safely nurse once you are awake and alert enough to hold your baby. By that time, the amount of medication in your bloodstream is low enough that the amounts in your milk would not be significant. The point at which you wake up after general anesthesia is the point where enough of the drug has left your system that it no longer has an effect. In addition, pediatric surgeries require anesthesia - and that is a more serious exposure than through mom's milk. Mom might want to nurse just before the procedure in case she's out for a while or too groggy to function normally for a bit.
http://kellymom.com/health/illness/mom-surgery.html

You can also call the Infant Risk line at (806)-352-2519, open 8 to 5 central time Monday to Friday. They are also associated with Dr. Hale. Their site says they provide "up-to-date, evidence-based" information about medications and breastfeeding.
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Old 08-26-2011, 08:32 PM   #3
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I had surgery sedated, but the anesthesiologist told me that even under general, I would be ok to nurse immediately after. I actually found that DD was super awake that day after. I think she got the anti-drug they use to wake you back up, but I'm not sure. Bring your pump with you in case you get delayed, or for after as you are recovering. You don't want to be uncomfortable. Good luck, mama!
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Old 08-27-2011, 01:50 AM   #4
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Re: Breastfeeding and Surgery-help!

I had surgery on my abdomen when DS was 3 weeks old and could nurse as soon as I felt up to it. Kellymom.com is a good resource like the PP said. Some doctors aren't necessarily up on the breastfeeding research and take a "better safe than sorry" approach.
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Old 08-27-2011, 02:17 PM   #5
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Re: Breastfeeding and Surgery-help!

I would definitely call Dr. Hale's Infant Risk hotline referred to above. In fact, get your doc to call too so that s/he can get the correct information for the next person!
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Old 08-28-2011, 12:33 PM   #6
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Re: Breastfeeding and Surgery-help!

I had ear surgery when my LO was 4 months old. I was under general. Your doctor is wrong. Ask to talk to the anesthesiologist and check out Dr.Hale's site and Kellymom. You don't even have to call now. I talked to 3 separate anesthesiologists and they said it's fine-no different than having to go under for a c-section. They all said if I'm awake enough to breastfeed, then it's safe for baby to nurse because that means it's out of my system to safe levels. My baby had no side effects or problems. I would double check your antibiotics and painkillers, though. Codeine is not recommended b/c of breathing problems in a small part of the population, for instance. I did pump but never needed it-I just fed her before and after surgery with no problem.
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Last edited by nakia; 08-28-2011 at 12:34 PM.
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Old 08-28-2011, 06:14 PM   #7
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Re: Breastfeeding and Surgery-help!

Thank you for the advice and resources. I thought that 48 hrs seemed excessive, but was worried about jeopordizing my LO's health. I will probably end up pumping 2 bottles just in case I'm groggy, otherwise I will feed her right after. thanks again! makes me feel so much better
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Old 08-28-2011, 06:20 PM   #8
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Re: Breastfeeding and Surgery-help!

I'm glad you've decided to nurse as soon as your ready and alert. I've had MANY surgeries over the years and all my surgeons have been uneducated and told me to pump and dump and one even told me to wean my daughter(she was 1 1/2 at the time)Unfortunately many dr's just don't know so they tell people incorrect information.
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