thread: Breastfeeding and IVF/AC

  1. #1
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Jan 2006

    Breastfeeding and IVF/AC

    So, youíre breastfeeding your baby and now considering a return to IVF (or other forms of assisted conception)? Do you need to wean?
    Iíve compiled some info on this Ė With thanks to some BB members who have provided links and summaries of information theyíve received.

    This is a good place to start - Link to the podcasts (it's No.22)

    Hereís a summary (courtesy of ~ Mylitta ~)
    The main points were:
    ~ Not all woman HAVE to give up breastfeeding
    ~ A woman whose menstrual cycle has returned regularly while still breastfeeding may not need to wean
    ~ Breastfeeding would least affect woman that are having FET's that don't require drugs
    ~ She went through each drug and talked about how effective it's transmission through breastmilk might be, and how to reduce the amount bubs might get. For example, drugs given by injection are probably given that way because they are less effective as oral drugs, therefore any that gets through the milk would be less effective than via injection, and also that the drug would first go through the baby's digestive system and get broken down more.
    ~ Most drugs are once daily drugs, so if you breastfed just before taking the drug, then wait as long as possible before feeding again it will lessen the amount in the breastmilk.
    ~ Many of the drugs used are found in a womanís body at some stage in their menstrual cycle or pregnancy anyway (although usually at lower levels)
    ~ We need to balance the benefit of continuing breastfeeding vs the potential risk of the drugs.
    Hereís another useful one - Breastfeeding Through Fertility Treatments (IVF and FET) Ė updated with info on prolactin and implantation (thanks to Entreat & MummaSue)

    If youíve been in this situation or have any other useful info to share, please do! This is an area about which little seems to be known.

  2. #2

    Oct 2008

    Awesome, thanks MadB!

  3. #3
    BellyBelly Member

    Aug 2009
    Back in the bush Capital

    Thanks for this MadB!

    We see our FS in a few weeks to discuss number two. I was anticipating the question of breastfeeding and have been thinking it over. It's a FET, we have male factor infertility, I have regular cycles again so theoretically all looking good that I can continue to breastfeed DS. Having said that, we only have one frozen embryo (and it's in Melbourne, so we'll have to make the journey down there for the transfer) and I want to do everything I can to ensure it works as I'm not sure if we could afford another stim cycle for a while...

    I guess this is a dilemma many people have but I'm grateful to have more info to read

  4. #4
    BellyBelly Member

    Apr 2009
    Northern Beaches Sydney

    Will be interesting to see what your FS says Lise. One of my girlfriends who had been in the verge of starting IVF before she fell pregnant naturally went back to her FS to discuss how long they should try naturally this time round before going the IVF route. He asked if she was still breastfeeding (which she was at the time) and when she said yes he said that it would be unlikely to work. This was regardless of the fact that she started ovulating a month after she gave birth and was breastfeeding exclusively for a year. I think what he had explained was that breastfeeding doesn't just potentially effect your cycles but it also alters the lining of the womb which makes implantation more difficult. I had always been told that you had to give up breastfeeding prior to (re)commencing IVF but had put it down to needing your cycle to come back prior to being able to start a treatment.

    After we had DS my FS who was also my OB indicated that I would need to stop breastfeeding prior to recommencing IVF if we wanted to go for no 2. Because of my age and that it had taken 5 rounds to have DS we decided at the time to let nature take its course and I continue breastfeeding as there was no guarantee that IVR would work and it would be a shame for DS to miss out on all the benefits of being breastfed. Quite a few of my friends have had to go the IVF route and they were all given the same advice. However I guess as more and more research is done advice being given can change.

  5. #5

    Dec 2006

    It's good to see that there is more information and knowledge out there now. I would have done things differently, but i'm still happy that I did the right thing at the time for me, with the knowledge that i had.

  6. #6
    Registered User

    Dec 2006
    In my own private paradise

    It's good to see that there is more information and knowledge out there now. I would have done things differently, but i'm still happy that I did the right thing at the time for me, with the knowledge that i had.
    ultimately, that's all you can do hun!