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What's the chance I'm going to spend nearly £100 on breastpump equip etc. and then not get a drop out?

(40 Posts)
TimeWasting Mon 15-Aug-11 15:27:22

I know many women are unable to pump much even though their baby is well fed direct from the source, but does anyone know what the actual likelihood of that happening is?

startail Mon 15-Aug-11 15:41:46

Never expressed more than a drop with my hand pump for either DC. Despite the fact that DD2 was exclusively breast feed till after she went to school.
Sorry, but I'd beg or borrow rather than spend lots of money unroll you know you can do it.

TheRealMBJ Mon 15-Aug-11 15:45:24

Not sure about stats but I'd say 50/50. Wouldn't bother with buying one unless you really need one as even if you can express (like I could - tons) you might end up with a bottle refused or find that you never really have occasion to use the ebm.

Grumpla Mon 15-Aug-11 15:48:11

The chances of you not getting a drop out much much higher if you spend £15 on a crappy hand pump or attempt to hand-express without proper help.

If you buy (say) a hospital-grade Lactaline pump for nearer the £80-£100 mark you would be FAR MORE likely to be successful with expressing.

I used one for 3 months, my son was EBF on expressed milk all that time and I filled the freezer too. They really are far, far better than hand pumps - once my supply was established I was able to express about 6oz each side in about 25 mins (so 12oz altogether) although did vary slightly according to time of day etc. Hand pumps I stopped using at about 2 weeks and never managed more than a couple oz each side at a time (and it was bloody hard work!)

curlyredhair Mon 15-Aug-11 15:53:17

Borrow one from hospital or hire one. Way cheaper and I found the hospital ones to be much better quality.

mousesma Mon 15-Aug-11 15:58:38

Why don't you see if one of your local breastfeeing support groups has a breast pump library? My local NCT group had a range of breast pumps available for short term loan so you could see how you got on with different models.

OhdearNigel Mon 15-Aug-11 17:14:58

I know they say you shouldn't do it (to drive sales presumably) but I have purchased 2 2nd hand pumps in my BFing career and both have been fine. I paid £5 for a hardly used Medela Swing so I say get a second hand one to see how you get on.

FY interest, I could express getting on for 500ml in one day at work so you could find expressing works out really well for you smile

pookamoo Mon 15-Aug-11 17:21:15

If I were you, I would wait until baby is here (I am assuming he/she isn't yet born) and see if you can borrow or hire a pump or even a couple of different types, then you can see how you get on and decide which one to invest in. I ended up using a very basic hand held pump in the end, which was after having tried a number of different ones over a period of a few months!

BodyUnknown Mon 15-Aug-11 17:35:51

I bought a £30 manual one - got about 2 drops. Knew there was milk, and feeding going relatively well, so invested £89 in Medela electric pump. Never got more than 7 oz in a day, nowhere near enough for baby. I was so disappointed, but I suppose it was never for me as my milk just went away at 16 weeks sad I felt like an absolute failure.

I'd definitely wait until baby is here, but if you could borrow one first to try it out and see if it works for you that would be best. The Medela pump was brilliant, I'm sure it would be amazing for someone whose breasts actually let down enough when sucked on by a machine! Mine lives in its box on top of the fridge.

TimeWasting Mon 15-Aug-11 18:26:18

DC2 is due end of Septmeber. I never pumped with DS due to pig-headed beligerance when HV pretty much directed me to, once the weight issue had already started to resolve. (complex, yes grin)

I wasn't able to hand-express more than drops and due to C-section and being a v. large lady supply was a problem, so I think being ready to pump this time might get things off to a better start, but it's a lot of money I could spend on flapjacks.

I hadn't thought about bf support group, I'm going to try and get to that before DC2 arrives and will ask there.

Isn't there a problem with using second-hand electric pumps like the Medela Swing (which is what I'm after) due to milk getting into the motor? I'm sure I read something on here about that...

seeker Mon 15-Aug-11 18:28:59

I wouldn't bother. All the faff of bottle feeding with added faff.

Moulesfrites Mon 15-Aug-11 18:34:38

I think it depends how much expressing you are planning on doing. If you will need to express a lot then the better the quality of pump the better.

I got a cheapy manual pump, but I have only used it about 5 times. I found the whole thing a complete gaff tbh!

Moulesfrites Mon 15-Aug-11 18:35:00


thisisyesterday Mon 15-Aug-11 18:37:51

i wouldn't spend anything on a breastpump before yo have the baby tbh

you might not even want to pump.

you could also contact your local NCT... ours hires out medical grade pumps, so if you wanted to try one you could.

i would say that unless you are planning on exclusively pumping then you do NOT need a big electric breastpump.
I had one with ds1 because he wouldn't feed, and it was a godsend.
with ds2 i was expressing once a day for a friends baby and just used an avent handpump which was more than adequate, but i wouldn't have wanted to use it all the time as it made my hand ache!

doughnutty Mon 15-Aug-11 18:42:07

(Don't) Buy a philips avent. I bought one whose motor went after ten days use 3-4 times a day. But I was managing to get a good amount out even when I resorted to manual after it broke. Got a replacement which didn't work at all.
But it did mean I got 2weeks free trial as I got my money back.

TheRealMBJ Mon 15-Aug-11 18:49:08

Don't use a second hand Medela. They have a closed system and can breed stuff (which I wish I had known before I bough my very expensive Swing as I now can't sell it on eBay with a clear conscience sad)

Ameda are fine second hand or borrowed as far as I know.

If you are wanting to express to help with supply issues, you could always cross that bridge if you get to it. You may not have the same problems or experiences this time round and may find that you don't need any extra help with supply. And if you do need something you can hire one or even buy one for next day delivery off amazon

TribbleWithoutACause Mon 15-Aug-11 18:50:40

I've used a medela swing and an avent isis duo, I much prefer the avent as I can get a lot more out using that one.

I would say if you can try out a pump before you commit to buying (borrow from a friend etc) then do that as I really think that different pumps such different people. Some people can do hand expressing, some people can cope with just a manual.

Honestly start off with a manual and if you need to you can buy or rent a pump.

TheRealMBJ Mon 15-Aug-11 18:54:19

Hey, what do you know DBM blog for today, about 2nd hand Medela Swings

superjobee Mon 15-Aug-11 18:55:12

i nhad a manual avent with DD couldnt get upto 2oz ever, including whilst looking at pictures thinking bout the baby etc all the mumbo jumbo that should help sad i could get 2-3 big sprays blush but after that, nothing.

TheFowlAndThePussycat Mon 15-Aug-11 19:04:10

Rent a hospital grade pump, medela have a rental service they are bloody brilliant. I had to pump from day 0 with a prem baby in nicu & by day 8 or 9 I was expressing gallons grin. I tried the swing too, it was good, but nowhere near as good.

WiiUnfit Mon 15-Aug-11 19:46:28

I can normally get about 5oz in a go with my manual Avent pump, I would second the suggestion to start with a manual pump & see how you get on. I find the manual easy to use as I can see what rhythm works for me & go with. A lot of people can express with electric & not manual but a lot of people are the opposite - getting lots with a manual & not a drop with an electric.

MarinaIvy Mon 15-Aug-11 19:56:38

I bought a couple of hand-powered off ebay and was grateful for them - I was going through a hard time direct breast feeding and this saw me thorugh until my nipples could cope with it/DC learnt to calibrate. If I thought I could have afforded it, I would have bought electric and powered, but I didn't, though nothing against them.

MoulesFrite - may I say, you've got the yummiest MN name ever.

As to those reckon expressed breast milk is all the faff with added faff [over bottle feeding, I assume? If so...:]. ARE YOU F***ING STUPID?!?!?

Amapoleon Mon 15-Aug-11 19:58:33

i bought a hand pump and an electric one, got about 3 drops from each but I know some people use them successfully.

BodyUnknown Mon 15-Aug-11 20:03:03

It's definitely more faff than bottle feeding (though I gave up on the steriliser at 6 months <bad mother alert>). All the cleaning, the sitting down for god knows how long to get one paltry bottle's worth, the cowness, urgh. Would not do it again.

Bottle feeding for me was keeping a biiiig jug of boiled water, and just boiling the kettle and adding 2oz to the cold stuff to get the right temperature, 6 spoons of formula and bingo. Took about a minute.

I had the Medela Swing. Gutted it cost £89 and I can't sell it on! I swear it's not grubby but understand the closed system thing.

TimeWasting Mon 15-Aug-11 20:04:50

Marina, I think expressing to feed is a big faff if you don't really need to do it. I wouldn't express just so DH could have a go iyswim.

That blog post is v. interesting TheRealBMJ, I'm put off Medelas now.
The Amedas seem good though, and have a next day delivery for their hospital grade rental service, £40 for 15 days.

I may buy a manual and then if that doesn't work, I'd be able to hire the hospital grade, which surely has the highest chance of success?

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