Reply Hey Mom! Learn more about the Gerber Life Insurance Grow-Up Plan!
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 08-31-2011, 10:50 AM   #1
CDNMommyofmany's Avatar
Registered Users
Formerly: CDN Mama of 4_08
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 1,546
Breastfeeding while in NICU...Did it work for you?

My last 2 babies were both preemies, one born at 33 weeks due to IUGR/low fluid (induction) and my 1 year old born at 29 weeks due to 2 subchorionic hemorrages/water breaking. With my 3 year old, I pumped like a crazy woman while he was in the NICU, but unfortunately after coming home he developed horrible reflux and a lactose allergy and couldn't tolerate my milk With my 29 weeker, my milk never came in, not even colostrum so I didn't even have a chance with him at all.
I am now 32 weeks pregnant with another IUGR baby and due to be induced in the next 2 weeks (I also have a placenta band that is affecting circulation to her and that is the reason for the early induction)...she is also breech so I have to have a c-section. I'm wondering with another long NICU stay out of town, and 5 other children under the age of 12 whether its really worth it to try and pump for her or let the formula chunk her up...I just don't know how busy I am going to be between traveling daily to the hospital (almost 1.5 hours one way, no Ronald McDonald house to stay at), 3 kids starting school next week and me recovering from surgery (my 1st section)...I am also a very small breasted person, still in an A cup now, so not much to offer, lol


Proud Stay-at-home-mama to 6 (including 4 preemies 29-35 weeks); who enjoys reading, homeschooling/unschooling and trying to make everyday as stress-free as possible for my 2 precious sons with Autism
CDNMommyofmany is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2011, 01:38 PM   #2
ChelseaGirl7's Avatar
Registered Users
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Illinois
Posts: 2,198
sorry you are going through this! Personally, I would try to pump at least some. It will give you an excuse to rest, which it sounds like your going to need! And it will help your baby catch up. But I'm a pretty big lactivist. My opinion is always at least give it a try. You never know, it could end up being this baby is a nursing champ and you don't have to pump much after you get home. Good luck with your delivery, hope you have a speedy recovery and your lo has a short easy NICU stay!
Chelsea SAHM to ASD Nate 1-07, preemie peanut Emma Lynn 7-08, Clara Elizabeth 2-10 and Jonathan Connor 10-11 Wife to highschool sweetheart Z
ChelseaGirl7 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2011, 08:41 AM   #3
FerventlyDreaming's Avatar
Registered Users
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 1,722
Re: Breastfeeding while in NICU...Did it work for you?

My experience was not a rough as yours but actual NICU nursing did not work for me and I got very little milk. Not even enough to get out of the bottle to give him. But I kept pumping every two hours until it came in ... maybe day 3-5. I forget. I can see how this would be difficult for you! But I think I would try and if it doesn't work don't beat yourself up about it
[SIZE="3"]Megan, Wife to Ron, Mommy to Ben 5-7-09, Grant 4-22-10 Abby 6-16-12,Alex 6-15-15 You're so beautiful to think of, but so hard to be without, E no longer in our home, always in our heart
FerventlyDreaming is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2011, 07:42 PM   #4
Registered Users
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Beautiful Tennessee
Posts: 3,548
My Mood:
Re: Breastfeeding while in NICU...Did it work for you?

I pumped every 3 hours night and day from birth until day 10 when he came home. He had some TPN the first 3 days per doctor's orders and then just BM. I nursed him only 2x in the NICU and he did very well. He was a bottle baby on pumped milk in the NICU and for 3 days once home until his weight and strength were such that the pedi cleared him for nursing full time. He never looked back. I actually enjoyed his bottle feedings since I was so worried about him eating enough being so tiny and sleepy those first few days. Daddy loved those few days of bottle feeding BM too. It was much easier to nurse and not pump so when he was 14 days old, he began exlcusively nursing and did awesome. We had no issues until he tried to wean at 11 months. So I EP'd for him for 6 months thereafter.
Leslie Helpmeet since 1999. WAHM to Big(04), Middle(08) and Little(09) and Double Blessings (10/13).Granola crunchy, scheduling, Evangelical Liberal mommy that CDs, BFs, ERFs, & BWs. An attached parent without the Attachment Parenting.
GEMQEMCABOOSE is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2011, 10:11 PM   #5
Aydinsmom's Avatar
Registered Users
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 498
It didn't work for us. But DS did not figure out BFing until he was 4 months old. I did a lot of pumping, but I was lucky to have a lot of milk. I started pumping every 2-3 hours. It was easy when i was still jn the hospital, less so when i was home and he was still in the NICU. And my trip to the hospital was only 40 minutes.
Aydinsmom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2011, 08:19 AM   #6
rumblepurr's Avatar
Registered Users
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Second star to the right and straight on till morning!
Posts: 2,324
My Mood:
Re: Breastfeeding while in NICU...Did it work for you?

Aww Mama, I'm sorry ! I never ever want to go back to the ICN for any of my babies EVER!!! So you are in my prayers and so is your little one. I exclusively BF my first 2 until they weened at 18 months, and had a more than generous supply LOL. So I thought I could pump and keep my milk up for my 3rd who was born with hydrocephalus and had brain surgery when he was 3 days old. Even though I had plenty of milk to begin with, a professional hosp. pump and pumped every hour, after a month I went dry. However, when we were released, I would nurse him and then give him a smallish bottle. He had reflux so bad we had to do very small frequent bottle feeds anyway. My milk came in day 3 after release and he totally BF within 2 weeks.
Looking back I wish someone had told me about Reglan or Domperidone. I would definitely taken the Meds to make my milk keep up, because he was really intolerant of formula, (We're talkin Projectile spit up, the nurses hated to feed him because of it).
I woud try to pump if you can. I know my life was crazy insane with 2 kids and a newborn in the NICU, and you are soon to have 6! If you can, and I don't know how long your LO wilL be in NICU, have someone sit with them when you can't. We tried to have someone there with our DS as much as possible. We had some terrible understaffing for the nurses at our hosp. and he was often neglected because he was on pain meds and couldn't cry to get attention for diaper changes. Good Luck Mama <3
Amber: Mama of 4 DS's; 10/2002 10/2005 8/2007 1/2010
and 1 DD 11/20/13 ************. Married to J .
Extra crunchy, night , book loving, sewing enthusiast.
rumblepurr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2011, 07:46 AM   #7
boy-oh-boy's Avatar
Registered Users
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: NE OK
Posts: 2,773
My Mood:
Re: Breastfeeding while in NICU...Did it work for you?

My second was growth restricted and in the NICU for 2 weeks. Nursing was difficult, in that he frequently fell asleep soon after trying to nurse, and would not be roused. I was able to pump enough to give him though, so I think any formula he had was minimal. I don't really think he had any formula, though. It did help that I had already been nursing my DS1 (15mo then), so I didn't have to wait for the milk to be accessible.

Remember that your bra size doesn't determine how much milk you make. I am also an A.
boy-oh-boy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2011, 03:00 PM   #8
Registered Users
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 9,012
My 1st was 31 wks and very sick. Didn't even start milk by NG tube for 2 wks. I pumped every 4 hours around the clock til my milk dried up when she was 3 months old, but she would never nurse since she got bottles 1st and had a tiny little mouth. I would say try. Even colostrums better than nothing. And stopping is easier than starting later on. Good luck!
mibarra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2011, 10:13 AM   #9
Registered Users
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: SC
Posts: 422
Re: Breastfeeding while in NICU...Did it work for you?

Sorry to hear your difficulties. I only have the one preemie, so I didn't have others at home to fret over and who also needed my energy and attention. I hope you have good family, friends, and church for support. It would have been miserable for me without them! I had preecclampsia, which didn't resolve for weeks after delivery. I was on Magnesium Sulfate IV for 24 hours after the c-section and wasn't allowed out of bed (which meant I also didn't get to see baby). I don't know what happened of if I was just too out of it to think straight, but I didn't even try to pump until the following morning (now around 36 hours after delivery). I wanted to see the baby once the IV was finished, but was not allowed because of high BP - I hated it! So, the Lactation Consultant came by and was going to come back later, because there I was, high BP, crying... However, I asked her to stay and she went through everything with us adn I was able to pump a couple ml's!! From there I pumped every 2.5 to 3 hours during the day. They suggested trying for 8-10 pumps per day to establish supply. You didn't have to pump through the night, but I would often pump late, just before bed and then when they woke me up in the morning for rounds. When I went home I set an alarm to wake around 4am to pump then to bed. If I went more than this I felt huge and would leak. Needless to say I had a great supply and although I stopped pumping when baby girl was about 9 mos, I still have half a freezer full! I hear there are some EO's that can help, doTerra is a great company for therapeutic grade oils meant to be used as meds. If you're interested I can find out names& dosages. One is supposed to help with initial establishment of milk and others to increase supply. Also the LC told me eating oatmeal - not quick, but the cooked kind, helps to increase supply. I wasn't able to nurse much in NICU due to reflux and she was getting fortified BM so if straight from the boob it didn't have as much calories/ nutrients in it. Once she came home I tried a bit, but it was easier to give the bottle because I had so much milk the flow was too fast - in the bottle she also had a thickener which helped with the reflux and ablilty to swalllow. Hope that helps definitely give pumping a shot! It helped me to just be alone and quiet for a while throughout the day.
gghmommy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-13-2011, 08:38 AM   #10
coy_coy1's Avatar
Registered Users
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Southern California
Posts: 109
My Mood:
Re: Breastfeeding while in NICU...Did it work for you?

I had PROM (premature rupture of the membrane) & baby arrived 3 weeks ago at 32.5 weeks gestation. I also pumped diligently right after my section (my first). But I was in the hospital for 5 days of recovery. With support from the nurses, lactation gals & the hospital grade pump my milk came in a day 3. Quantity slowly increased with every pump & the more skin to skin time with LO. DS had an NG tube and was getting mostly BM until my supply matched his feeding requirement in ml. I too am small an A cup, but I focused on my DS and really believed my milk would sustain & my DS would thrive on it. It was not easy when I was released from hospital and had to pump at home so he could continue to have BM in the bottle. We BF several times and fortunately it was very successful. He much preferred the boob to nipple feeding but he is a very flexible easy going little guy.
It would be worth it for you to try. Pumping in itself is challenging but even more so when you don't have your baby close. I had to mentally be relaxed and really believe (psych myself out) that BM was going to get my baby to gain weight and reach all the milestones necessary to get him home. If with your situation with your hands so full,if it isn't a success, go easy on yourself. It's okay, you can feel good knowing that you did you best & tried. Sending you good BM mojo & wishing you the best.
coy_coy1 is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Copyright 2005 - 2018 VIX-WomensForum LLC. All Rights Reserved.