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C Sections and trouble breast feeding any link?

(16 Posts)
Welshygirl Sun 19-Jul-09 08:44:23


I'm just curious whether there is any link between having a C section and a failure to breast feed? Almost all the women I have spoken to who have had c sections (emergency or planned)have ended up bottle feeding. I'm just wondering whether this is anyone elses experience or whether there has been any research into this?

I had an emergency C section and had real trouble with feeding - baby would not latch on at all for a week despite help from many midwifes. Finally managed it after a week with the help of breast feeding councilor at home but baby still screamed at breast and would take very little - ended up mixed feeding with lots of expressing.

essenceofSES Sun 19-Jul-09 08:52:16

I had a CS 10 weeks ago and am still exclusively BF. It was a struggle in the beginning because I was told that my milk took a little longer to come in because I'd had a CS. (He was born the Sat morning and milk came in on the Wed afternoon). Even then it took a while to establish supply.
I was v lucky though that he seemed to know what he was doing and had a pretty good latch from about half an hour after birth!

gigglinggoblin Sun 19-Jul-09 08:57:35

I had an emergency CS and really struggled for about 3 weeks, I never got the milk coming in like you normally do. Luckily this was dc4 and I was stroppy enough to ignore the mw who told me to start ff immediately (tho I did come here for advice!). No prob with latch just getting the supply going

herbaceous Sun 19-Jul-09 09:18:31

Ah! I had an emergency c-section 10 days ago, and my milk supply is paltry. Just a few teaspoons of orange creamy stuff per half hour of expressing. Not helped by being made to feed him lots of formula in hospital to get his weight up...

undomesticatedgoddess Sun 19-Jul-09 18:25:18

My milk didn't come in for 8 days with DS1 who was an emergency CS. Ended up FF.

Still exclusively BF 18 week old DS2 who was born by elective CS. My milk came in on day 3 this time. I also knew what to expect this time round.wink

Had LOTS of skin to skin with DS2 and asked for a side room so I could just sit with my boobs out all day.

traceybath Sun 19-Jul-09 18:33:14

Well my experience was:

ds1 - emergency c-section bf fine
ds2 - elective c-section - he spent over a week in NICU and i expressed for the first 5 days and only put him to breast on day 4 as he was being tube fed. BF him for 11 months.

I've always read it can cause problems but touch wood hasn't so far for me. Am having dc3 by elective on thursday and plan to bf for another year.

Grendle Sun 19-Jul-09 19:01:41

It can be, but not necessarily.

Sometimes the spinal anaesthetic used contains a drug called fentenyl, which is similar to morphine. Babies born after exposure can be more sleepy, demand less, and so milk may come in more alowly. Additionally skin-to-skin after birth isn't always achieved and sometimes there is a delay in starting breastfeeding (or babies are supplemented early for various reasons), all of which can have an impact. Then of course there's any effect of whatever the reason for the c-section was in the first place... sometimes mum and baby have endured a v long and arduous labour, or been exposed to the artificial hormones used to augment labour (which compete with the natural oxytocin and can also have an effect).

Fortunately, in good hospitals, mums will get skin-to-skin on upper chest or face while being stitched or in recovery and often feed in recovery, sometimes within an hour of birth. Then, if they are kept close and baby can suckle whenever they need to often bf gets off to a good start smile.

skidoodle Sun 19-Jul-09 19:15:12

Thanks Grendle, lots there I didn't know.

I had some trouble at the start with latch etc. I think the fact that I had just had abdominal surgery, and movement was limited, meant I couldn't make the subtle little adjustments I would have been able to make otherwise.

LeninGrad Sun 19-Jul-09 19:17:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Gingerbear Sun 19-Jul-09 19:19:00

I had 2 CS, breastfed DD to 18 months and DS to 2 years.
First few days difficult, but mainly due to babies having mucus and unable to suckle well. After that was fine.

HeinzSight Sun 19-Jul-09 21:14:36

My milk didn't seem to come in properly at all after my c-section. COMPLETELY different to my two vaginal births where I had that football boob thing going on by day 3!!

uberalice Sun 19-Jul-09 21:26:05

I had a vaginal birth with DS1 and wasn't able to BF at all because he refused to latch on. I had a planned CS with DS2 and was able to BF. I found it difficult at first but my supply was fine, and I don't think it was the CS that caused the problems I had.

Pingpong Sun 19-Jul-09 21:31:54

I was able to BF after emergency C-section.

LadyBee Sun 19-Jul-09 21:43:15

I breastfed DS after my emergency c-section - it was very clearly stated in my plan that I wanted to breastfeed and the MW helped me to latch in recovery, he didn't feed very much then, and I had trouble feeding from one side early on, but I think that was more to do with my nipples than the CS. Milk came in on day 3.5 (with much relief, he was a big and hungry baby). The only problem the CS caused me was in the 1st few days when it was difficult to move, twist or pick up DS.

ameliaandme Fri 24-Jul-09 14:22:51

I had an emergency C-section and i don't think my milk ever "came in" properly.

ALthough because i was really ill after having her we fed her formula at night which i wished i could change and i think that might have been a big reason as to why my milk just never appeared in big enough amounts.

I remember one night pumping for ages and only about 5ml came out, i was well upset.

midnightexpress Fri 24-Jul-09 14:25:54

I've had 2 em CS. 1st attempt at BF was a disaster, 2nd one latched straight on and fed until he was nearly 2.

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