Note: This message is displayed if (1) your browser is not standards-compliant or (2) you have you disabled CSS. Read our Policies for more information.
Breast pumps come in a variety of styles and price ranges. Selection of a pump depends on its purpose. Hospital-grade electric breast pumps are recommended for long-term heavy use, such as a mother pumping for a premature infant or returning to full-time work. Double pump kits reduce time spent pumping, as both breasts can be pumped at once.
Many insurance companies reimburse for electric breast pump rental when a breastfeeding baby is hospitalized. Sometimes it helps to have a prescription from the baby’s doctor stating the need for the baby to have his or her mother’s breastmilk.
When a mother and baby are separated for several feedings each day, when a mother is establishing her milk supply, or when a mother is increasing her milk supply, a hospital-grade electric breast pump is recommended.
The two companies listed below are examples of companies that have a variety of pumps: manual, battery, or small electric pumps that may be purchased, and hospital-grade pumps that are rented. Call the numbers below to talk to the company representative. Both companies have literature and other supplies for hospitals and parents. Call for more information.
2000 Hollister Drive
Libertyville, IL 60048-3781
Avent America, Inc
501 Lively Boulevard
Elk Grove, IL 60007-2013
1101 Corporate Drive
McHenry, IL 60050
Bailey Medical Engineering
2216 Sunset Drive
Los Osos, CA 93402
FOR YOUR BABY IN THE INTENSIVE CARE NURSERY
Human Milk Banking Association of North America. Recommendations for Collection, Storage and Handling of a Mother’s Milk for her Own Infant in the Hospital Setting, 1993
Once a day, rinse your breasts with water during your bath or shower. You do not need to wash your breasts or nipples before each pumping session.
Wash your hands well with soap and water each time before you pump your milk.
Pump your milk into a clean food container. If you are hand expressing, a large mixing bowl works well because the milk tends to spray in many directions.
After expressing or pumping, wash and rinse everything that has touched the milk.
If your milk will be used within 4 hours, it may remain at a room temperature of 75º or cooler. If your milk will be used within 3 days, it may be stored in the refrigerator. If your milk will not be used for over 3 days, store your milk in the freezer. (Remember the cream will rise to the top. Simply swirl the milk to mix it.) If no refrigerator is available, your milk may be stored in a cooler with ice for up to 24 hours.
Store pumped milk in the amount your baby takes at a feeding. If your baby is under one month, store in 2-ounce amounts. Thaw one container of milk at a time. If the baby wants more, another container can be thawed quickly.
You may layer frozen milk. The first time you pump your milk, you may put it into the freezer. The second time you pump your milk, cool it in the refrigerator, then you may add it to the frozen milk. It is important not to put warm milk on top of frozen milk. Also, the amount of cool milk you pour on top of the frozen milk should be less in volume than what is already frozen.
To thaw your milk, you may place it in the refrigerator for a day. For a quick thaw, take the frozen milk container and run it under warm tap water or place it in a bowl of warm water. Remember to swirl the milk because the cream separates and needs to be mixed with the rest of the milk. Once warmed, whatever the baby does not take within an hour should be discarded.
Breastmilk may be stored in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days. Breastmilk can be stored in a freezer that has a separate door from your refrigerator, for 3 to 4 months. Keep your breastmilk in the middle of the upper shelf, not on the bottom and not on the door. Breastmilk can be stored in a chest type freezer for 6-12 months.