With the mother's breast milk, the baby receives unique nutritional components that can provide the baby with full growth and development. It contains all the essential proteins, fats, carbohydrates, minerals and vitamins. But along with them, infection can also be transmitted. If there is such a danger, the local pediatrician suggests doing a sterility test. Such an analysis is carried out in the bacteriological laboratories of the SES.
In what cases is it absolutely impossible to refuse a bacteriological examination of breast milk? There can be only two reasons:
- my mother had been ill with purulent mastitis;
- in the first two months of life, the newborn does not stop diarrhea, characterized by loose stools with a large amount of mucus and blood. The chair is dark green. Against the background of diarrhea, the child has low weight gain.
How should breast milk be collected for analysis? 1. Milk is collected from each breast in a separate clean container. These can be either test containers that you can buy at the pharmacy, or sterilized glass jars. Each can must be signed.
2. Before expressing, hands and areola should be thoroughly washed with soap and dried with a clean towel. Additionally, you can treat the areola with alcohol.
3. The first portion of milk (5-10 ml) is not taken for analysis.
4. Collect 10 ml of milk from each breast.
5. The material must be brought to the laboratory no later than two hours after expressing.
Microbiological culture of breast milk takes about seven days.
What can be the results? Staphylococcus epidermidis and enterococci may be present in breast milk. They not only do not harm, but also perform a protective function, being representatives of the normal microflora of the mucous membranes and skin. And if pathogenic microbes are found in milk, measures must be taken. Dangerous microbes include fungi of the genus Candida, Klebsiella, hemolyzing Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus. The presence of these microbes in milk does not immediately indicate the mother's illness, since they could have entered the milk from the external environment. The permissible norm is no more than 250 bacterial colonies per 1 ml of milk (250 CFU / ml). If the number of bacteria is less, then there is no danger to the health of the child. Premature or immunocompromised babies are at risk.
Even if the number of bacteria significantly exceeds the permissible norm, you should not panic. This could be the result of inadequate collection of tests. They get into the expressed milk from the mother's skin. If, nevertheless, an external way of bacteria penetration is excluded, you need to find out what kind of infection gave rise to microbes. Most often it is mastitis, but the reason may be in the mother's sore throat.
Should breastfeeding continue if pathogenic microbes are detected? The World Health Organization informs that all pathogenic microbes that enter the body of a nursing mother stimulate the production of special protective proteins - antibodies. They pass into breast milk and provide protection for babies. Scientists have found that breast milk contains antiviral and antibacterial factors that fight off most infections. Due to its protective properties, pathogenic microbes, getting into the baby's intestines with milk, as a rule, do not take root there. This was found out by examining the feces of babies and the breast milk that they consumed. It turned out that there are no microorganisms present in the mother's milk in the child's feces. It follows that the mother's infection is not transmitted to the infant. An exception is purulent mastitis. The presence of pathogenic bacteria in milk does not require special treatment. Pediatricians usually prescribe herbal antiseptics, bacteriophages and drugs to strengthen the immune system of the mother and child. Antibiotics are prescribed only in particularly difficult cases. Sometimes the infection can be beaten with the diet of a nursing mother. The main thing is to have a positive attitude, aimed at long-term breastfeeding.