To book an appointment, call 585-310-1713.
Mothers who will be receiving their child through adoption, surrogacy, or a partner who is birthing can still have a breastfeeding relationship!
There’s a great deal of information–some current, some old; some accurate, some inaccurate–on the web regarding breastfeeding without birthing. Ideally, women who are interested in choosing a protocol and inducing lactation will work with an IBCLC who has strong experience and knowledge in this area. Depending on the protocol the mother and IBCLC choose, and the mother’s health history, a doctor may also be on the lactation induction team.
In 2012, I induced lactation for our son, whom we adopted at birth. Between my own production and donor milk, he received breast milk for 14 months. Since that time, I have continued to follow the developments in research regarding the processes for non-birth mothers to breastfeed their children. I am available as a resource for in-person appointments as well as virtual appointments for women who wish to breastfeed without birthing.
A bit more basic info:
The process of making milk without pregnancy and birth is called induced lactation. For a mother who gives birth to her child, the hormones of pregnancy and the postpartum shift in those hormones cause a woman’s breasts to produce milk. A mother who will not be the one giving birth can develop a breastfeeding relationship by giving her body other messages to produce some milk and by using alternate methods of at-breast feedings.
Babies in fragile states or whose birth mothers had poor health or limited prenatal care may benefit from breastfeeding even more than the average baby does. In addition to the nutritional and immunological benefits found in breast milk, the lactation induction process provides adoptive mothers/mothers through surrogacy a lovely source of bonding with their child–and often healing in their relationship to their own bodies. I found both true when I induced lactation for my son.
The lactation induction process usually involves several appointments. At the initial appointment, we review the mom’s personal and medical history; perform a brief physical exam; and choose a lactation induction protocol that is the best fit for the mom’s goals, available energy/time, and length of time before the baby’s anticipated arrival. Depending on the protocol and timing, we may go through the process of how to use a breast pump comfortably and successfully. The mom receives instructions regarding physician follow-up and other steps to take.
Follow-up appointments are for trouble-shooting the lactation induction process as it progresses. When the baby arrives and the mother begins at-breast feeding, we may also meet again to make adjustments to the plan and/or to do general troubleshooting of breastfeeding. (See ‘Postnatal Appointments’ for more info.)
For mothers who have urgent needs, same day or next-day appointments are often available.
Initial appointment (up to two hours): In office* or virtual: $165.
Follow-up induction appointments (up to one hour): In office* or virtual: $100.
Follow-up appointments with general, non-induction breastfeeding issues become initial postnatal appointments.
(Mothers who are eligible for WIC or Medicaid may request a half-price in-office consult.)
Please note: some birth/first mothers and surrogates are willing to provide pumped milk for the babies they carried. This can be a fantastic additional source of breast milk if the birth givers are physically and emotionally able to do so.
*For mothers who live within an hour’s radius of my office, I strongly prefer to do these appointments in the office so that I have all of my tools and resources available for determining the best fit for each situation.
To book an appointment, call 585-310-1713. To ask basic questions or see if we’re a good fit, email me at email@example.com.
For mothers who see me in person: I will provide you with a superbill that you may use to file a claim with your insurance company. Coverage varies, and the negotiation with the insurance company regarding this reimbursement is your responsibility. I do accept FSA/HSA cards for payment.