Adoptive Moms Who Do Whatever It Takes to Breastfeed Are Brave

breastfeedingWe've come a long way, babies! At least in terms of breastfeeding awareness. Consider this: A few decades ago, biological mothers were more likely to feed their infants with formula than to nurse; now, even adoptive mothers are doing whatever it takes to breasfeed their babies. Seriously!

It's not easy to induce lactation, but apparently it's not as difficult to accomplish as you might think (or as I thought, anyway).

Although the way some women go about it is considered somewhat risky ...


The most commonly used technique involves women taking birth control pills for several months to trick the body into thinking it's pregnant -- not the risky part. It's the next step that gives some people pause: Taking the drug domperidone, a gastrointestinal drug which lists milk secretion among its side effects (even for men).

Domperidone isn't FDA-approved, so most women end up getting the drug from pharmacies overseas (New Zealand is a popular location). There is one similar drug available in the U.S., Reglan, but it's been known to cause depression.

Sounds scary, right? Except if you look a little bit more closely at the facts, taking domperidone doesn't seem quite so dangerous after all. The FDA put out a warning against using domperidone in 2004 because of potential cardiac side effects, but neglected to mention that said cardiac side effects were only known to occur when the drug was taken intravenously by already severely ill patients. Domperidone has been approved for use by breastfeeding mothers by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

And after all, nothing worth doing in this life is completely without risk. The benefits of breastfeeding for both adoptive mothers and babies are huge, both physically and emotionally, and if I were adopting a child, I'm sure I would see the pros of taking domperidone as outweighing the cons.

What about you? Would you consider taking a drug to help you breastfeed if you were adopting a child?


Image via moppet65535/Flickr

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