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Cabergoline - to stop breastfeeding 8 wk old baby?!

(12 Posts)
Chislemum Mon 24-Sep-12 10:46:02

I hope someone can help me and share some experiences regarding the use of Cabergoline and how to go about stopping to breastfeed an 8 week old baby.

It's a bit graphic.... sorry!

I have had DS1 on 1 August. It was a CS and I am an older first time mother (39 yrs). I very much wanted to breastfeed but had massive problems as baby was "shredding" my nipples. I knew I had sensitive skin but this still came as a shock as the pain was toe curling. Tried to persevere and baby was partly fed formula at the hospital but mostly breastfed. Pains and "shredding2 got worse. Had midwives, lactation specialists etc. look at it and then decided to feed by expressing until breasts were no longer bleeding. Then tried to start mixing breast feeding (actual breast) with expressing around week 6/7. Result, I had shredded nipples again (latching on is fine) and started to have very hard breasts with knots. Managed to massage these away but was in severe pain. Checked with my consultant who took one look at my breasts and said that I should stop breastfeeding due to the horrific state of my breasts. She prescribed Cabergoline for suppression of established lactation 250microgram every 12 hours for 2 days.

Doctor is absolutely fabulous and when I said I wanted to try to have a gentle transition for baby and myself she said I could try to reduce the expressing slowly and start feeding baby both, expressed milk and formula but not directly breastfeed and then take the Cabergoline.

I want to go for that and wanted to know whether anyone has done something similar and how that worked for them? Side effects sound rather bad.

After expressing and massaging my breasts are a bit better but baby now refused formula this morning and got very agitated, even though he accepted a formula top up yesterday from my husband as a top up after being fed expressed milk.

I thought I try to do mixed feeding for another two weeks or so if the pain allows. I really really want to give baby the best possible start in life and feel awfully guilty already that I refuse him the breast.

Any views, ideas? I am using Aptamil which baby received at hospital and seemed to like but alsolike the idea of Organic formula. Just want to do the right thing and am very confused.

Thanks very very much!

tiktok Mon 24-Sep-12 10:52:34

Sorry to hear your story, Chisle sad
You can check cabergoline yourself here: and share your findings with the doc.

You can also call any of the bf helplines - they will talk you through options for stopping.

I wonder if your baby has been checked for tongue tie? 'Mystery' pain and damage can be the result of this - did no one give a reason why your nipples and breasts were so badly affected? Latching on cannot be 'fine' when the baby's feeding action has this ruinous effect. Something is happening in the mouth for this to happen.

Would you be able to give your baby the bottle skin to skin, snuggled in, so it feels like breastfeeding to your DS ?

Chislemum Mon 24-Sep-12 11:13:07

Thanks v much for quick reply.

I think it is really my silly sensitive skin that is the issue here. I have issues with all types of makeup too, etc. No tongue tie, that was checked and position and his latching on are fine. I wish it was that... but will try the skin-to-skin feeding as this sounds like a great idea. He is always trying to reach my breast when I am bottle-feeding him, so he misses this clearly. I also cuddle him for ages after feeding when he is falling asleep.

mawbroon Mon 24-Sep-12 12:02:06

Agree with tiktok about having the baby checked for tongue tie.

Most hcps are not experts at diagnosing tongue tie you only have to look as far as this thread to find out how often tongue ties are missed

Does he have any other symptoms of tt? list further down on this page

tiktok Mon 24-Sep-12 12:06:04

Chisl, sorry, it is highly unlikely that latch and position are fine with so much obvious damage done to your skin. Truly.

Chislemum Mon 24-Sep-12 12:09:37

He does not have tongue tie, seriously, as my DH asked this straight at the hospital and it was confirmed by pediatrician. My mother also has skin issues like I have, so that is the problem. Shame really. Baby loves breastfeeding, it is just that my skin goes very very sore, despite the cream, etc.

tiktok Mon 24-Sep-12 12:31:13

Yes, it's a real shame - I have come across skin as sensitive as this, but it was when mother was bf her baby who was on solids, and the traces of the food changed the baby's saliva and her skin was affected by it. I have not heard of this much damage with a baby who was solely bf. I wonder if anyone suggested shields? They have their drawbacks but they do prevent the baby's contact with the nipple.

midori1999 Mon 24-Sep-12 12:37:50

Did you look at the other thread Chislemum? Mawbroon's son was looked at by the paediatrician running the hospital's tongue tie clinic and wasn't diagnosed until he was 6.

I have to say also that I had my DD's latch checked by numerous professionals who all said it was fine, yet I had cracked and bleeding nipples. I now know that it wasn't fine at all and they were wrong.

I can't help regarding the medication, but if you feel sad about stopping breastfeeding, maybe it's worth considering getting another opinion regarding your problems and maybe from a tongue tie specialist? Perhaps someone here can suggest someone? Of course, you may well be right and it in down to sensitive skin, but getting good help with breastfeeding is hard and I know so many people who thought for a long time they couldn't breastfeed for various reasons, only to later find out that actually they could have.

Chislemum Mon 24-Sep-12 12:49:13

thanks so much for your help and ideas. i have already spoken to quite a lot of people about the breastfeeding and have resigned myself to stopping just want to do it in a gentle way and give baby as much bf as possible .... not sure whether to get yet another opinion. thanks so much for your thoughts. i will ponder again...!

Chislemum Mon 24-Sep-12 12:56:43

I wonder about the question of baby's salvia.... mmmmh, maybe I am allergic to it? I am clearly clutching on straws but all your posts have giving me something to work on. Very grateful.

mawbroon Mon 24-Sep-12 13:06:32

Just to say about the tongue tie possibility, milk matters offer a virtual service to help identify tongue tie. I would trust them over a paed any day tbh.

My 6yo ds1 has suffered and continues to suffer the consequences of untreated tongue tie. I wouldn't wish it upon anybody. There is way more to tongue tie than breastfeeding problems.

What prompted your DH to ask? Is there tongue tie in the family?

Chislemum Mon 24-Sep-12 13:11:23

@mawbroon:my husband noticed I had issues with breastfeeding, he asked the questions he learned at NCT class? Tongue tie? Is it the C-section? Is he latching correctly. DH took the classes very seriously.

Baby has a long tie, like mine, really.... hmm

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