Breastfeeding with implants~ an early update

It’s been a while! The last you heard from me I was 39 weeks pregnant and Gabrielle was still sitting stubbornly in a breech position. I’m going to apologize in advance, I sure this post will be a little all over the place. I have a ton of scattered thoughts, and things I’d like to share. So this will be a scatterbrained overview, with hopefully more detail later on.

Gabrielle Rose was born bright and early Friday November 9 by a preplanned gentle cesarean. An ultrasound that morning showed that she was still frank breech. In my part of the US OBs are not trained in breech delivery, so a vaginal breech birth can be more dangerous for baby and mom. A properly trained OB or midwife would normally have no problem doing a vaginal breech birth. I was able see her right away, touch her and talk to her. After a short trip to the nursery while my procedure was finished. Then she came to the recovery room with me. We were able to try to start breastfeeding right away. She seemed to take to it really well. But after that the problems started.

After we settled into our room one of the lactation nurses from the nursery came in to see us. Breastfeeding isn’t one of those things that happens easily, you and the baby have to learn. I knew to ask for help right away. The smallest thing early on can become a problem later, early correction is essential. The first problem we ran into was nipples. There are all types of nipples, unfortunately for me mine are slightly flat. This can make it much harder for the baby to latch properly. They have to work hard to pull the nipple hard enough to get milk to flow. Because of this many women with flat nipples end up using a nipple shield. Just like anything, there are pros and cons to using it, there are supporters and those that do not support their use. Gabrielle is a tiny baby and just couldn’t pull hard enough to get anything. And it took a few days to find this out, and the nipple shield wasn’t helping.

At her 2 day check up (5 days after birth, 2 days after going home) we find out that she has lost too much weight. She is also having problems keeping her body temperature up. We ended up back in the hospital. The lactation nurse immediately got started helping me pump, trying to see how much I was producing. I made sure to tell her about the previous breast surgeries that I had and what my breasts were like before surgery. Based on that and the low amount of milk I was pumping the nurse brought up IGT, insufficient glandular tissue. It is hard to diagnose in a woman who has gotten implants, but it is very likely that I have this and it is keeping me from producing enough milk. The nurse had me pumping to try to increase my supply while we supplemented with formula. I continued with just pumping for a few days before I started feeling it just wasn’t worth it. By the advice of a wonderful friend, I tried to breastfeed again. What they say about hormones releasing is so true, there is just something about it that makes the difference.

Gabrielle is now 4 weeks old. We’ve had some trials along the way. After going home from the hospital the first time we have ended up back twice. We had issues with formula, two road trips (and a third coming), packing a house to move, cleaning, hotel stays, etc. She is a little champ. She travels so well, sleeps where she can, and is eating much better. She still will not nurse at night, she wants to sleep through the night and won’t wake up enough to nurse. But when she is awake she nurses like an expert. She gets the most milk first thing in the morning and right before bed. She is growing and happy, what more can a new parent ask for?

I’m still in the limbo process. In a few weeks I’ll be finishing a move. Hopefully once things get settled and we get into a new baby routine I’ll be back to blogging more. I know this was a scattered post, I hope to address a few things individually in future posts. I’d like to talk about early nursing bras, flat nipples, IGT, nursing with implants, pumping with implants, and who knows what else. Like always, if there is anything you’d like to see feel free to email, message me on Facebook, or comment below.

 

3 Comments

  1. Glad to have you back blogging and glad you and your baby are well! I’m pretty far away from having children but find the whole thing very interesting so I am looking forward to reading about your experiences!

  2. I’m really glad you made this post! I know I have some close to me who could really benefit from info on breastfeeding with implants so I really look forward to your future posts too.

    I remember reading an interesting article awhile back about insufficient glandular tissue and breastfeeding but I can’t find it again to save my life! However, I did find this one: http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/76/5/823.short

    Also, (and this will probably benefit women who are consider breast augmentation more than those who have already undergone it) talks about what types of implants/surgeries can be done to help preserve a woman’s nursing supply: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1524-4741.2006.00364.x/full It seems like a good read before undergoing surgery and something to discuss with ones doctor if one hopes to nurse after surgery. I do wonder, though, if the stats are somewhat off for women who try to nurse with implants because statistically you would assume that these women have a higher percentage of women with insufficient glandular tissue than the average population so it does make sense that they would have a larger percentage who struggle with low supply too.

  3. Mona

    Congratulations! I am due in May, so I am looking forward to your nursing posts! Thanks to your review of the Parfait Affinitas Casey (which I googled) I own a very nice bra that has served me well in the first trimester and is still working nicely in the second. I’ve been following your blog since and was very happy to see the update that all went well. Good luck with the breast feeding, you’ll make a great parent no matter what.

    P.S. We seem to share a similar bust shape and profile (mine are not augmented), all this “you can tell if they are fakes” is pretty much BS as you have written so eloquently before.

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