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Old 03-09-2013, 07:53 PM   #1
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where did my colostrum go?

My baby was born at 34 weeks. He is in the nicu being fed through a feeding tube. I pumped all night and got 4 mls of colostrum. So they had to supplement with formula to get 10 ml. I pumped twice more and got 5 ml. After that it declined to drops. I just pumped and didnt get a single drop. The lactation consultant seems kind of useless. I am frustrated. I have been pumping every two hours for 15 to 20 minutes.

I need tips or support or something. I am so discouraged. Does colostrum stop before milk comes in?

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Old 03-09-2013, 08:07 PM   #2
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Re: where did my colostrum go?

That sounds super frustrating and disheartening. I have not been in a similar situation but I did read that colostrum is super thick and therefore really hard to pump out. If you aren't already using one maybe try a hospital grade pump. If the LC is being useless I definitely encourage you to reach out to another one in your area. I hear a lot of terrible stories about hospital LCs around me but I know there are some excellent independent IBLCs. But for now I hope you can get some rest and have faith that your milk will come in soon. Virtual hugs.
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:08 PM   #3
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It should switch straight from one to another. Are you hydrated? What kind of pump are you using? How do your boobs feel.lol. sorry if tmi ( heavy like milk has come in)?

You need to pump every hour and a half or so for 15-20mins. Keep going and don't get discouraged. It will come in and it will be fine

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Old 03-09-2013, 08:54 PM   #4
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Re: where did my colostrum go?

Sometimes with premies it is harder to get your flow going because your body was not quite ready either. Just keep pumping (even at night). Ask you doctor as I know there is something (can't remember what) they can prescribe to help.

Try to look at a picture of your baby while you pump. (Go get one on your phone if you need to) I know it sounds silly but your body will respond to giving a baby milk. (If you pump while looking at your baby/holding that might help too.) I know when I pumped I struggled with let down (full term baby when I returned to work) . If I looked at a picture... I would start to gush before I even started to pump. I pumped a lot more if I looked at a picture vs not looking at a picture.
Don't feel bad about supplementing formula. Just keep trying if you want to breastfeed. I also would see if yo can get a hospital grade pump if you are using a regular home one.
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:23 PM   #5
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Re: where did my colostrum go?

I would bet it is more the pump or fit of the flanges than your body not having anything to pump out.

Once the placenta is out your body should get the clue that your baby is out and needs milk -- gestational age doesn't make a big difference in that. Preemie milk is nutritionally different than term milk, but that is just because it is tailored to the special needs of apre-term infant.

You might consider hand-pumping. Many moms have more success with this as the actual touching of your breasts can help your body let-down and respond more naturally. http://kellymom.com/bf/pumpingmoms/p...f-links-pumps/

Is there someone else you can call for help? La Leche League, another IBCLC in the area, etc.?
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:53 PM   #6
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I think what Happens is since the colostrum is there from 4th month of pregnancy when you start to pump you get a lot cause theres been a lot there but then it isn't being produced as quickly and it is really thick. You could try to hand express into a small container like a plastic medicine cup or small bowl. Even if nothing is coming out keep pumping/hand expressing every 2-3 hours and the milk should come in soon. Good luck.

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Old 03-10-2013, 04:31 AM   #7
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Google hand expressing colostrum and massage your breasts as you pump. Relax when you pump read a book look at pictures of your baby do not watch the bottles anxiety kills your let down.

Pump every 1.5-2 hours and twice a day try to cluster pump for 15 min on 15 min off 3 cycles so an hour and a half.

Your doctor can prescribe Reglan to increase milk supply. Eat oatmeal every morning. Any amount you get even if only 10-20 drops is better than none.

Don't give up your milk should come in and when it does that's the time to pump like crazy so your body thinks you have a high demand.
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Old 03-10-2013, 05:02 AM   #8
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Re: where did my colostrum go?

This happened to me with 2 of our babies. They were both term but needed nursery care. It will be ok. I know it is hard but try not to panic. Your milk will come. I had a very hard time for DS needing formula but it was what it was kwim? They use a formula for their term and body weight in grams to decide how much their intake should be even though if you were straight nursing it would be different. How many days since your delivery? Just keep pumping. I pumped every 1.5 hours on both sides. You need to pump from the time you started the last session instead of from when it ended. That could help. Hang in there mama
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Old 03-10-2013, 06:35 AM   #9
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Hugs mama! No real advice from me except that if your hospital of isn't helping I urge you to cal your local la Leche league leader. They are soo much more helpful than any LC I've talked to!
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Old 03-10-2013, 07:15 AM   #10
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Thank you all so much. I am really struggling with this mentally which i know doesn't help.

I am staying hydrated, but am still on a restricted diet (c-sec) so I am sure my nutrition is low. I lost a lot of blood, too (placenta previa) and the nicu nurse said that might have affected things quite a bit. My boobs are flat as can be- like after a good feeding with DS1.

I am using a double electric hospital grade. The lc suggested the hand expression, too, but I cant get the hang of it. I recall it being super easy with DS1 but by that point I had an amazing supply. Soooo I am hoping if I ask to see an lc today I might get a different one... If not I am gonna call my LLL leader, but i had to deliver in Illinois and she is in Alabama where we live.

I really appreciate the support and suggestions.

My baby DS is only 36 hours old but he is struggling so they have stopped feeding him again. I haven't been able to hold him and cant touch him right now even.
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