The Accelerated Protocol

Suitable for intended mothers or adoptive mothers who have little time to prepare, or for mothers who wish to relactate

Milk production may be significantly lower with this protocol than that achieved with the Regular Protocol but there is more to breastfeeding than breastmilk.

Microgestin is taken for 30-60 days non-stop, only active pills, no sugar pills, together with the domperidone 20 mg 4 times per day. If significant breast changes occur within 30 days, the birth control pill is stopped while maintaining the domperidone, and the pumping schedule begins.

NOTE: If you are over the age of 35 and/or you are unable to use the estrogen-progesterone combination birth control pill, kindly replace the Ortho 1/35 of our protocols with EITHER Provera 2.5 OR prometrium 100 mg. There are health risks associated with the use of the estrogen-progesterone combination birth control pill for women over the age of 35 that you need to discuss with your doctor and this is why we replace the birth control pill protocols with Provera 2.5 OR prometrium 100 mg for women over 35.

Significant breast changes include an increase in breast size (1 cup) and breasts that feel full, heavy and painful. Note: stopping the protocol before these breast changes occur is not recommended.

Milk production is not as great on the accelerated protocol but the supply is usually sufficient to provide a significant amount of the baby’s needs. The mother can use the feeding tube device filled with either breastmilk or artificial infant milk to breastfeed her baby while she is going through the protocol. There are milk banks and milk exchange services that can provide the adoptive mother with breastmilk if it is not feasible for her to ask the birthmother to provide breastmilk. Many adoptive mothers and intended mothers have asked the birth mother to provide breastmilk for a limited amount of time ranging from two weeks to 1 month or more in order to provide colostrum to the baby. Many birth mothers are happy and willing to provide the child with a healthy start in life. At least one birth mother has reported that providing breastmilk helped her to cope with the adoption process. Many surrogate mothers have provided expressed colostrum and breastmilk for their couples to give their children. This has become more common in recent years.

If the mother has 4 weeks or less or even if the baby has arrived and the mother suddenly decides that she wants to do the accelerated protocol, she can. The Microgestin (taken once a day) is started immediately, regardless of the mother’s cycle day, (see the section that describes the medications above) together with 20 mg of domperidone 4 times a day. The mother can expect to feel fatigued due to the rapid start of medications. If the mother can take the Microgestin together with the domperidone for at least 30 days she will have a good result.

Once the mother has completed at least 30 days on the combination of Microgestin and domperidone and has experienced significant breast changes she can stop the Microgestin, maintain the domperidone and begin pumping with a double electric breast pump. A hand pump is just not up to the job. See the section on breast pumps. Significant breast changes include an increase in breast size (at least 1 cup) and breasts that feel full, heavy and painful.

It is recommended that the mother pump every 3 hours and once during the night. (See “pumping instructions”.) A mother’s serum prolactin levels naturally rise between 1 am and 5 am. Pumping during the night takes advantage of this natural occurrence. Additionally research has shown that frequency of breast emptying is more influential on milk supply than duration of breast emptying. The more often the mother pumps, the more milk she can store, and the better her supply will be.

Once the mother has started pumping she can add the herbs Blessed Thistle herb (390 mg per capsule) and Fenugreek seed (610 mg per capsule). The recommended herb dosage is 3 capsules of each, 3 times a day with meals. The domperidone should be taken 1/2 hour before meals for best absorption. Many mothers on the protocols have noticed a significant increase in their milk supplies when they began to add oatmeal to their diets regularly.

Fluids are very important. The human body naturally consumes and excretes the equivalent of 8 - 10 glasses of water per day. It is recommended that mothers drink at least 6 - 8 glasses of water a day if possible. Usually if mothers drink water when they are thirsty during the day, adequate fluid intake is achieved. Beverages containing caffeine should be avoided as they cause rapid excretion of fluids.

The arrival of the milk supply while pumping follows a particular pattern. It begins with clear drops, which become more opaque and whiter in color. Drops will appear, followed by milk spray, and then a steady stream of breastmilk. It may take a few days, a week, or two, or more for the mother’s milk supply to come in. Everyone responds differently.

Remember that if the mother is fertile, she must use an alternative method of contraception. It is advisable for the mother to store as much breastmilk as she can. Once her baby arrives, or if her baby is already here, the baby should be fed on demand. The baby can be supplemented if necessary using a feeding tube device filled with either the stored breastmilk, donor milk from a milk bank or milk exchange service, or artificial infant milk until the mother’s milk supply is well established. Remember, not all the milk has to come from the mother. Whatever amount of breastmilk she can provide to her baby is a precious gift. There is more to breastfeeding than breastmilk.

Note that the birth control pill and domperidone are both approved by the American Academy of Pediatrics for use in breastfeeding mothers.