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Bit of moral support needed please! (long, sorry)

(7 Posts)
bakingtins Tue 03-Jun-14 14:20:19

My third baby is 11 days old, born 2 weeks early weighing a titchy 5lb9oz. I BF my older two for more than a year each.
DD had a TT which was divided day 1, then was admitted to transitional care for blood sugar monitoring and had problems with her blood sugars dropping, I was told to top her up with formula. I was dead against that because my DS2 had milk protein intolerance, and was threatened with her being admitted to SCBU for a dextrose drip. I asked if she could have some banked milk and was told that wasn't possible on the wards. So I said we'd go to SCBU, where the consultant immediately said of course she could have donor milk. She was tubed and after 2 tube feeds was sent back to the ward, complete with donor milk to top her up after feeds. I pumped after every feed with a Medela Symphony and by day 3 was pumping enough to provide her top ups in addition to feeding her directly. Then she developed jaundice and had to go into an incubator for phototherapy. On day 5 they finally let us out! Day 6 we saw community MW and she had lost weight, but a day later had put on an ounce. She's very sleepy, has to be woken every 3 hours for feeds (strip her off and change nappy each time to wake her enough to latch) but I thought she was feeding ok. Weighed again on Monday and she only put on 10g in 4 days, so again had to put up with them suggesting she needs formula was so upset I ate a whole bar of chocolate when I got home Since then I've been expressing with an Avent hand pump and topping up after each feed but I can only get an oz at a time, so she's having 8 BF + 8 x 1oz EBM. It takes an hour every time to wake her, BF, feed her EBM with a bottle, pump and sterilise, and I also have 2 older children to look after. I've arranged to rent a Medela hospital grade pump which should arrive tomorrow. I have to go get her weighed again tomorrow and be put under more pressure if she hasn't gained 'enough'.
She's been checked by SIL who is a paediatrician and she was happy with her, she is well hydrated, jaundice is going, yellow seedy nappies and plenty of wet ones, still very sleepy.
It's just knocked my confidence that she is not gaining when I thought she was feeding ok, and every person I see wants me to put her on formula which is just depressing. I was the only person on my ward of early/small babies not topping up with formula in week 1, because that was the first solution to every problem rather than trying to address the BF issues.

I'd love to hear from anyone who has had a similar experience how you coped, and if/when you got back to feeding directly. I love the convenience of BF, at the moment it feels like I have the worst of all worlds!

tiktok Tue 03-Jun-14 15:37:17

Oh wow....what a difficult start sad

Yes, you have the worst of all worlds at the moment - horrendously time-consuming at a period when you should be snuggling up with your baby, having turned all difficult corners and resolved the early probs. Instead you are battling, and worried, and under pressure.

Is there any info on why she was small and had the blood sugar problem? Or is it just one of those things?

Seems to me there is every argument in favour of waiting and giving you and your baby a chance to get this sorted by continuing to do what you are doing - pro-active waking to make sure she gets as much direct bf as she can, with extra expressed breastmilk as the top up (the expressing is perfectly justified, as we are just not sure, from the sound of things, that she is feeding effectively all the time).

A better pump - which you are organising - is a good idea. You could also do breast compressions at every feed (google if you are not sure what this is).

Your little dd is healthy and growing (assume the jaundice is under control now), so there is no super urgency to get her growing more just yet....can you discuss leaving things for a few days before reassessing, with the HCPs?

bakingtins Tue 03-Jun-14 16:58:11

I have a autoimmune condition causing previous recurrent miscarriages which affects how the placenta forms, though I was treated in this pregnancy there was a risk it would be below par. I had growth scans showing she was on the small side but growing fine all the way through, she was predicted to be about 6 1/2lb if she got to 40 weeks, so just a combination of small and early.
There is a cut off of 2.6kg (about 5lb 10oz) to be discharged same day, below that they automatically test blood sugars, small babies just don't have the reserves to cope until milk comes in. There's been no suggestion there is anything actually wrong with her.

FTVsmummy Tue 03-Jun-14 19:34:50

My DC was induced and born 2 weeks early weighing 5lb 14oz due to placental insufficiency. None of the scans had shown her to be quite as small as she turned out to be. No blood sugar problems but managed to establish EBF by consistently putting her to the breast & waking to feed.

She stayed on the 9th centile for the first 4 months but has just crept onto the 25th in the last few weeks despite a CMPA which was discovered at about 3 weeks after much screaming/sick/slow weight gain & a tongue tie.

I agree with Tiktok, you may just need a few more days to get it established.

bakingtins Wed 04-Jun-14 20:37:59

Boo sad day 12, after 2 days of expressing and topping up after every feed, no gain at all.....
Kellymom says her requirement is about 15-16 oz a day and she's been having 8 oz EBM and 8 feeds - surely she can get an oz at a time?
Got my medela pump through today and now expressing about 45ml (1.5oz) x 8, so that will be 360ml or 12 oz, plus 8 feeds. Reweigh again on Friday.
She's more alert, weeing and pooing, jaundice continuing to improve, seems well, just not gaining anything. It's so disheartening when I am working so hard. sad sad sad

Tomkat79 Wed 04-Jun-14 21:28:42

Aww tins hello!! Huge congrats on your new baby, so pleased for you.

Seems like in same boat (see my hand holding post) I've just added.

It's soo disheartening isn't it. Sending you lots of love x

bakingtins Wed 04-Jun-14 21:42:05

Hi tomkat it does sound like we are having the same struggles. I am very much a "go with the flow" person, all this waking to feed, pumping, bottle feeding is a bit GF for my liking, but I wouldn't care if it was actually working. Hope you get better news next weigh-in.

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