K.P. asks from Albuquerque, NM on October 22, 2009
Increasing Breast Milk Production with Reglan
Hello, I need your help, I have a friend who has low milk production. Her baby boy is 3 months old and she has been breastfeeding and pumping. She says after she feeds him and then pumps she is not getting any milk. The baby is gaining weight and eats all the time. She is going back to work and would like to have some extra milk on hand. Her Doctor has prescribed Reglan to help increase her milk production. Has anyone hear of, or is taking this drug, is it effective, safe, any side effects. If anyone has any tricks on increasing the milk production that would be helpful too. Thnak you
J.J. answers from Phoenix on October 23, 2009
I wouldn't assume she isn't producing enough milk just because she can't get much out by pumping after feeding. I never could get much out by pumping, unless I pumped with my own hand. Machines never worked for me, but I always had plenty and constantly leaked one side while feeding the other. If she drinks a lot of water, she will have enough. I'm no expert, but it sounds to me like the problem is more with the pumping. Maybe a lactation consultant or the La Leche League would be able to help with that.
A. answers from Albuquerque on October 23, 2009
If she is feeding regularly and he is gaining weight, she is producing enough milk. Pumping is NOT the same and many women do not pump milk easily. A baby's latch and suck are MUCH more productive than the unnatural action of a pump. So first, encourage her and help her understand that she IS making a sufficient amount for her son.
Second, she should get in touch with LLL or a Lactation Consultant to help her pump more and transition to work. What she would spend on an LC is MUCH less than what she's spend on formula. It's SO WORTH IT.
Third, there is a class called Back to Work with Breastfeeding next month here:
They also have a lending library full of breastfeeding books to help her.
And Presbyterian Hospital has a free breastfeeding clinic she should visit.
She can get plenty of info on increasing milk supply from any of the above sources, but make sure she is getting enough fat into her diet (from real food, nothing packaged or processed), as well as drinking enough water. And she should consider the herbal teas mentioned, as well.
N.W. answers from Tucson on October 23, 2009
Reglan is a medication originally prescribed to slow your stomach from digesting and speed up your intestines to release... I heard of doctors prescribing this to increase milk supply... I used Mother's milk tea... a mixture of several herbs specifically for increasing milk supply... I would recommend that first as well as feeding 1st then pumping right after... I would start 1st thing in the morning, as your breasts will be most full then... has she called La leache league???
J.P. answers from Phoenix on October 23, 2009
A friend said that she didn't produce much milk, so her doctor told her to drink a beer, because beer naturally makes your milk really come in. So, another friend tried that this last weekend and she said that after drinking a beer, she had a ton of milk. Beer also will not give you the side effects of the prescription drugs. Personally, I'd rather my baby have a little bit of beer in my milk, rather than those prescription drugs. (Both of which would end up in your milk)
A.M. answers from Phoenix on October 23, 2009
I don't know anything about Reglan but I am one that stayed away from all drugs when I was nursing. But I do believe there is a website that you can look up in details about different drugs ifyou want. Alfalfa tablets not only help with increase of milk production but quality also. This is what I relied on when I was nursing 2 babies full time. Hope this helps.
M.M. answers from Las Cruces on October 23, 2009
I used Relan with both my children. At 6 mos, it was like clockwork my supply dropped. I tried the Fenugreek, extra pumping, etc. and did not have the great success I did with the Reglan. With my daughter I had no side effects and was able to take it during the day. With my son (2nd child) it made me very drowsy and so I could only take it at night. My doctor recommended taking it four times a day until my supply was up and then dropping down on the number of times a day I took it as long as my milk production stayed up. I was able to keep it up by taking it 1-2 times a with my daughter. With my son, since it made me extremely drowsy I would take two pills at night and it still helped to keep my milk production up throughout the day. I would say I took it for about 6-8 mos. with each child and I had no other side effects other than being sleepy the second time I took it. I noticed no side effects with my children. They are 4 and 2 now and are doing great. I thought it worked wonders and recommend it to others trying to increase milk production if the holistic approaches do not work for you.
L.H. answers from Albuquerque on October 23, 2009
I had a problem with milk production with my last child. It was a rough road. I was prescribed Reglan and I don't think it helped enough to make the side effects worth it. I was a depressed, emmotional basketcase. Tell your friend that if she does decide to try it, to be sure to watch out for the depression and stop if she needs to!
M.F. answers from Phoenix on October 22, 2009
Traditional Medicinals makes a Mother's Milk Tea that has worked for me. I had a prolific supply until I went on birth control, then my supply decreased significantly (still have enough to nurse and store some at the end of the night, but not nearly as much as I used to). When I drink the Mother's Milk Tea, I have much more at the end of the night to freeze. They recommend drinking several cups a day, but I make a pitcher of iced tea with 4 bags and drink it that way. You can find it in most grocery store's Natural Foods sections. Good luck to your friend!
M.P. answers from Phoenix on October 23, 2009
Yes. Reglan is sometimes prescribed for increasing breastmilk.
HOWEVER, it causes depression in some women and passes through breastmilk to the infant.
Domperidone is widely prescribed in other countries for increasing breastmilk and her doctor can write a prescription for it. It's safer and doesn't cause depression. Both drugs are used to treat gastroesophageal reflux but have the side effect of increasing prolactin levels which raises milk production in some women. Although this might not be why she's not making enough milk, it might boost her production anyway.
I would highly recommend the book "The Breastfeeding Mother's Guide to MAKING MORE MILK" by Diana West, BA, IBCLC and Lisa Marasco, MA, IBCLC.
It is the most comprehensive book I have found on the subject and, believe me, as a mom who struggled with breastfeeding with both my children, I have done my homework.
Blessings to your friend.