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elcs and breastfeeding

(10 Posts)
jocie Tue 05-Jul-11 22:33:53

hi a friend of mine is pregnant and might need an elective section. I think she's planning to breastfeed but isnt sure about whether her milk will take longer to come in as there will be no 'labour' to kick start it, she wonders whether she will need to give a little bit of formula to kepp baby going.

I had an emcs with my 1st and a vbac with 2nd. I think my milk came in on day3 with both. Am not sure what to say top her as although i know the norm response would be to not give formula as this might muck up bf, my 1st had formula from a cup a couple of times as bf took a while to get established and i was soooooo exhausted from the laboutr and the being up all night on the second night with him trying to feed that i let them give him a little while i had a rest. they let me out on day 3/4 althought they didn't want to as he'd lost 12% of body weight (he was 9lb 7.5oz at birth!) but i insisted and did cup top ups all that night. Anyway i then went on to bf til just over 1 year so the ff did not muck anything up for me.

So has anyone got any experience of bf after an elcs that i can pass on.
I did wonder about doing nipple tweeks (her not me!) for a couple of days leading up to the elcs date or using a pump to stimulate but im not sure if this would do anything.
I just want to be able to give her the right advice when she asks.

chloeb2002 Tue 05-Jul-11 22:39:35

hi ive had a vb..emcs post failed induction and then an elsc.. first two milk on day 3 last one milk on day 3... i was also concerned and asked the same question on here1 loads of suppt. i just really demand fed. let dd suck and suck.. worked just great!

Ellenohara Tue 05-Jul-11 22:43:24

I had an elcs 2 months ago. Despite ds struggling to feed, my milk came in (thick and fast) less than 48 hours after the birth. I found that The issue with CS and bf is more about struggling to position when you can't sit up, but we managed to battle through it in the end

JeewizzJen Wed 06-Jul-11 08:49:35

I had an elcs last week and am now happily BFing my week old. My milk came in on day 2. Before that I made sure I put DS to mt breast as much as possible to stimulate the milk production and that seems to have done the trick. My understanding is its not labour that kick starts the milk, but the placenta coming away, which will obviously happen however the baby is born. smile

MedicalEd Wed 06-Jul-11 09:01:07

I remember some time ago that a London hospital had started doing a more 'natural' section where they deliver the baby straight on to the mother's chest.
At the time it was expected that this technique would spread as it was thought to help with bonding and bf'ing because of the immediate skin to skin contact.
I'm sorry but I have no idea if it did spread but it might be something your friend could ask her midwife about.

JeewizzJen Wed 06-Jul-11 10:32:20

Good point, I did also get skin to skin immediately after delivery. At my breast feeding antenatal class I was told it's really important for helping to establish feeding.

fruitybread Wed 06-Jul-11 10:32:30

I had an ELCS - my milk came in on day 2/3, and DS did pretty well.

A large V shaped cushion to prop yourself up with and something you can put across the scar area to protect it is a good idea. Just get as comfy as possible however you can, really.

After my DS was born, I got him skin to skin in recovery, squeezed a little bit of colustrum out of my nipple, rubbed it on his lips - he started rooting so I put him on the breast, and he started chomping straight away.

And then I kept him there! The best way to get feeding going is just to keep them on you and let them on the boob whenever they want. Don't wait til they scream - just keep them on your breast, really.

I think offering formula early on would be very likely to cause problems, tbh. I know it works for some women - but there's supply and demand issues, etc.

FWIW, women who have CS's are less likely to establish BF-ing, but if they do, are just as likely to continue as women who have VBs. It's worth remembering that CS's means ALL CS's - EMCS and ELCS. Obvs the babies born via EMCS, and the mothers who have EMCS, may well have problems to start with that make BF-ing difficulty, like a stay in SCBU.

I actually felt like my ELCS gave me an advantage BF-ing. I wasn't knackered after labour, and didn't have sore bits to be sitting on after birth when I was trying to get BF-ing going.

bumperella Wed 06-Jul-11 11:31:31

I had an ELCS and my milk didn't come in for just over a week, which is very unusual. I had a general anaestheitc, also v unusual, so none of the skin-to-skin "triggers" and obviously couldn't do anything much with the baby for a good while afterwards. I think ths must have had a fair amount to do with it.
We never got BF sorted out and IMO where it went really wrong was her being given bottles in the hospital - if she could have been fed from a cup until my milk came in I reckon we'd'vehad a better chance.

jocie Wed 06-Jul-11 14:26:28

thanks for the replies

Meglet Wed 06-Jul-11 14:40:54

I didn't have problems after my ELCS. I tried skin to skin in theatre but TBH found it very fiddly so gave up after 5 mins. Started bf about 2 hours later once settled in high dependency ward and had no problems at all! I woke dd to feed, in the daytime I didn't let her go more than a couple of hours without a feed. She poo-ed out the meconium on day 2 and my milk came in on day 3.

Positioning is tricky at first but as long as you rest and make sure you are waited on hand and foot it will make it easier.

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