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Mastitis or what?

(17 Posts)
JoyfulJoyful Thu 04-Apr-13 16:56:12

I've been breastfeeding for 7 weeks and like a lot of women, I've had a few issues which I thought were resolved but a few days ago I felt a lump which panicked me but the GP said it is milk that needs to come out but in the last 3 days I've beenhaving sharp needle like pains in both bressts.

I asked the GP if it's mastitis but she said it shouldn't be. I am using a lot of lansinoh because both breasts are also cracked. I really don't want to stop breastfeeding because I like it and my baby is putting on weight.

I've got flucloxacillin but don't know if I should use it.

Any advice would be appreciated.

QTPie Thu 04-Apr-13 17:12:16

Is the needle pain all of the time or just around the time of letdown? I used to have fairly painful (well prickly) letdown. Lasted until DS we about 6 months old or so...

JoyfulJoyful Thu 04-Apr-13 17:20:17

Hi QTpie, the needle like pain is around the time of letdown and I find that my breasts are getting engorged more than before.

QTPie Thu 04-Apr-13 22:32:43


From memory, painful let down didn't start from birth, but developed from around about a month after birth. This was also prime time for "blocked ducts" (ie hard lumps): blocked ducts best treated by regular feeding from both breasts (ie dont avoid feeding from a breast) and also gently massaging the lump.

I initially thought that "painful letdown" was thrush (DS also had a white tongue), but treat,ent did NOTHING for it and DS's white tongue eventually disappeared at about 4/5 months (long after had given up medication for thrush). In retrospect, don't think it was thrush... Just painful letdown...

You are probably finding that you are being more engorged due to increased demand and/or growth spurt. DS was a hungry baby (during the day - excellent sleeper at night) and I was still regularly engorged when he was 6 months old. When DS started dropping night feeds (he was down to one a night at 5 weeks and slept through from 12 weeks), I used to wake up before him, bursting with engorgement and dying for him to wake up and feed.... Your body does adjust though.

If engorgement is causing latch problems, then pump off a little (electric pump, hand pump or manually) before feeding: will make the latch easier, baby less frustrated and also latch less painful for you.

Lansinoh is magic - I used it (after every feed for the early couple of months or so) and it worked very well.

To be honest what you describe could be completely innocent (I.e. similar to my experience). However, can you locate a local breastfeeding councillor? Either the NCT or La Leche League or maybe your GP can help you find one.

You have got so far, it would be a shame to give up now if you can avoid it. Breastfeeding (like motherhood in general) is a bit bewildering, but it sounds as though you are doing so well smile


JoyfulJoyful Thu 04-Apr-13 22:52:17

Thanks a lot QTPie, I really appreciate your post. I will attend a breastfeeding session. The HV gave me a list of classes. In the meantime, I'll continue with lansinoh.

fluffypillow Thu 04-Apr-13 23:13:43

I had really bad problems with pain when I was feeding my DD for the first few months, especially on one side. It started after I took antibiotics for mastitis when she was 2 weeks old, this caused thrush (not visible on the skin or in DDs mouth). This was really, really painful, and after repeated treatment for weeks, it calmed down slightly. The pain then came back with a vengeance, and the doctor sent off a sample of my milk for testing. The result of this was that I had a staph aureous infection in the milk (the bacteria got in when I had cracked nipples in the early days, and gradually got worse). Then after two courses of the right antibiotics it was totally better.

I didn't have a painfree feed with DD until she was 5 months old, BUT I then went on to feed her very happily until she was 2.2 years! I have only just stopped (and really miss it!).

I must stress though, that I had to keep 'banging on doors' to get the help I needed, and was told numerous times by Doctors and health visitors to 'just give up!'. It's not right that we have to push for the help and treatment we need with breastfeeding, but the 'experts' often don't have the knowledge they should have to support breatsfeeding women and babies.

I wish you lots of luck smile

JoyfulJoyful Thu 04-Apr-13 23:23:00

Thanks fluffy. I may have to go back to the GP if the pain doesn't subside. My right breast especially has become very painful to the point of it being almost unbearable to feed but I will not give up. I thought it was thrush too so I have been using vinegar to wash both breasts but it hasn't made any difference.

I will see how it is over the weekend. Will also start using a warm flannel to massage the breasts.

QTPie Thu 04-Apr-13 23:36:30

Good luck.

Breastfeeding can be tough... It is very difficult to know what is natural and what isn't. Am not convinced that most GPs or HVs (who generally don't have much concern for the mother, just the baby) have a great understanding of breastfeeding either... Hence seek specialist breastfeeding advice.

Is there a breastfeeding forum on mumsnet? Might be worth trying there too?

Please post back when you have some sort of answer.

Take care.

Welovegrapes Thu 04-Apr-13 23:41:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

chocoholic89 Thu 04-Apr-13 23:45:32

I had matitis and thrush at same time hv perscibed a cream that cleared up thrush had to drain boob tho very painful.Keep up good work tho it will pass.

JoyfulJoyful Thu 04-Apr-13 23:52:06

Thanks ladies. I don't know how to go about moving this post but will check the bf forum.

Welovegrapes Fri 05-Apr-13 07:22:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JollyPurpleGiant Fri 05-Apr-13 07:26:39

Have you looked on

Doesn't sound like mastitis to me - I've had it 3 times and you need to have a high temp and flu-ey symptoms for it to be mastitis. Whenever I've had it I've been completely floored, only able to sleep and feed baby.

It could be a blocked duct, thrush, a painful letdown, poor latch or vasospasm... All these should be discussed on kellymom smile

Welovegrapes Fri 05-Apr-13 07:32:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JoyfulJoyful Fri 05-Apr-13 17:22:48

Hello Welovegrapes and Jolly, no I haven't looked on kellymom and there are no bumps on my nipples.
There are no hard bits in my breast now, it really is more the pain more than anything.

QTPie Fri 05-Apr-13 17:33:00

Have you tried massaging then? Assuming you don't have fever and flu like symptoms, it sounds like blocked ducts... These are a lot less common as time goes on.

JoyfulJoyful Fri 05-Apr-13 17:36:23

I have and I feel a bit better.

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