Mommy’s Time Out: Proper Breast Pump Maintenance

In recent weeks, mothers, especially breastfeeding mothers, may have seen social media posts about the CDC’s new breast pump usage and cleaning guidelines.

The guidelines were sparked by a case in western Pennsylvania. According to the CDC report, in August 2016 a baby girl was born in Allegheny County when at 29 weeks gestation. The three pound baby was fed her mother’s pumped breast milk and also donated milk. After 21 days, the baby showed signs of sepsis due to a bacteria called Cronobacter sakazakii.

Experts from the hospital, CDC, the FDA and the Allegheny County Health Department investigated and traced the bacteria to the mother’s breast pump valves and some of the mother’s frozen breast milk.

According to the CDC report, the baby’s mother reported soaking her breast pump parts in soapy water for a few hours without scrubbing or sanitizing and then then rinsing them and air drying them.

Click here for the full report: Notes from the Field: Cronobacter sakazakii Infection Associated with Feeding Extrinsically Contaminated Expressed Human Milk to a Premature Infant – Pennsylvania, 2016

As a result of this, the CDC released guidelines for how to best clean breast pump parts.

On Good Day PA, Katie Stone a pediatric nurse, breastfeeding advocate, and pumping mom noted that there are four-six cases of Cronobacter sakazakii reported each year and it is typically traced back to contaminated powdered formula.

Stone broke down the guidelines which you can see here: CDC – How to Keep Your Breast Pump Kit Clean: The Essentials Here, you may also download a PDF File of the guidelines.

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