Would you buy a used pump? - Mothering Forums
View Poll Results: Would you buy a used pump?
Yes, but only from a friend 17 18.48%
Yes, from someone selling one on craigslist or elsewhere 19 20.65%
Yes, but I'd buy new tubing for it 35 38.04%
No way, it's not worth the risk. 21 22.83%
Voters: 92. You may not vote on this poll

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Breastfeeding > Would you buy a used pump?
Raene's Avatar Raene 12:08 PM 03-18-2009
And please feel free to leave comments.

mamassong's Avatar mamassong 12:39 PM 03-18-2009
I voted no. An aquaintance gave me a Pump in Style, so I looked it up to get some tips, look where to buy new tubing, etc., and the Medela website warns not to share pumps. Also LLL warns not to. I guess because the internal parts can be sprayed with BM particles and cannot be replaced or cleaned. I know the risk is probably small, but I couldn't knowingly do it. Maybe I would with my sister or mom, but thats about it.

I had a conversation with some other moms about this, basically asking them the same question, and they ALL said they would share /have shared pumps, and they didn't know or didn't care about a risk so small. One mom said "thats like saying you can get HIV from a public toilet seat"

Hmmm..I don't know if you can or not, but I don't let my kids sit on a bare public toilet seat.

I don't know. I just didn't want to do it.
Llyra's Avatar Llyra 12:40 PM 03-18-2009
What exactly IS the risk? I would never have hesitated to buy a used one, from anywhere, as long as it was in good condition, and I'd just clean the parts that come in contact with milk. I wasn't aware the tubing came into contact with milk-- it didn't, not on the pumps I had, but mine were rentals, so maybe it's different? Anyway, maybe I'm just misinformed, and there IS a risk, so maybe I'm wrong. I don't know.
jocelynr's Avatar jocelynr 12:54 PM 03-18-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Llyra View Post
What exactly IS the risk? I would never have hesitated to buy a used one, from anywhere, as long as it was in good condition, and I'd just clean the parts that come in contact with milk. I wasn't aware the tubing came into contact with milk-- it didn't, not on the pumps I had, but mine were rentals, so maybe it's different? Anyway, maybe I'm just misinformed, and there IS a risk, so maybe I'm wrong. I don't know.
One time when I was pumping milk got suctioned into the tubing. I was leaning forwards and I'm not really sure how it happened. It didn't get close to the pump though, so I don't know how much it would really risk.
RunnerDuck's Avatar RunnerDuck 12:55 PM 03-18-2009
The Ameda pump is a closed system and milk can't get sucked in to the guts - FWIW.
mamassong's Avatar mamassong 01:17 PM 03-18-2009
Also FWIW, From Breastfeeding.com:

"According to the FDA, if a breastpump is labeled a "single user" or "single patient" device, that pump is only intended for one user and cannot legally be resold. By selling a pump that has been designated "single user" by the FDA, the pump is not being used in accordance with the FDA and is being "mis-branded," which is against the law, and the FDA could take action.

The reason the FDA designates many breastpumps as "single user" devices, is that there is no complete way to clean certain pumps to ensure that the breastmilk of the original user is not still within the pump system. Because some diseases have been shown to exist in breastmilk, the possibility of transmitting diseases through a used breastpump does exist, although it appears that no such cases have been documented.

To find out if your breastpump has been designated "single user" by the FDA, please consult the operating instructions that came with the breastpump when you purchased it.

Here are some common breastpumps that are labeled "single user" devices:
The Medela Pump In Style Breastpump
The Isis Breast Pump by Avent

Some breastpumps that are not labeled "single user" devices:
Medeal Classic Breastpump
Medela Lactina Breastpump "
CallMeMommy's Avatar CallMeMommy 01:21 PM 03-18-2009
I used my sister's friend's pump with my first. This time I bought an Ameda PY, only because I wasn't able to borrow one.
LittleBlessings's Avatar LittleBlessings 01:23 PM 03-18-2009
I have in the past purchased a used pump and did not think anything of it. I was unaware of the risks.
WantRice's Avatar WantRice 01:26 PM 03-18-2009
I thought that people often rented pumps from the hospital. I guess I'm not seeing the difference. Or is there something special about the hospital pumps?
CallMeMommy's Avatar CallMeMommy 01:27 PM 03-18-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by WantRice View Post
I thought that people often rented pumps from the hospital. I guess I'm not seeing the difference. Or is there something special about the hospital pumps?
Those are closed-system, multiple-user pumps. Made to share. And uber-expensive compared to a PIS or PY.
junipervt's Avatar junipervt 01:32 PM 03-18-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by RunnerDuck View Post
The Ameda pump is a closed system and milk can't get sucked in to the guts - FWIW.
that's what I was going to say. that is the only pump I'd buy from a stranger.

I would buy a medela pump from a friend.
kriket's Avatar kriket 01:41 PM 03-18-2009
I would buy a good looking (I know that sounds strange) pump from a stranger and replace the tubes/shields etc. Finances are my major motivator. I can't afford a new pump and can't afford formula, my only other option is a used pump.

Of course, I would rather have a new one, thats not always an option!
Raene's Avatar Raene 01:50 PM 03-18-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by kriket View Post
I would buy a good looking (I know that sounds strange) pump from a stranger and replace the tubes/shields etc. Finances are my major motivator. I can't afford a new pump and can't afford formula, my only other option is a used pump.

Of course, I would rather have a new one, thats not always an option!
Yeah, me too...finances are tight. But I do have the option of renting a pump from our local diaper store and they charge a really reasonable rate (hospital grade).
chi_mama's Avatar chi_mama 02:02 PM 03-18-2009
I used a medela PIS and even though it's a single-user pump I don't see how anything could be spread if you replace the tubing, horns and rubber-flanges.
The internal part (where really no milk can get out of even if it gets in....) can still be wiped down if you pop off the face plate. I mean, the pumps pulls milk out, nothing goes into the bottle from the pump, tubing etc. I guess if you wanted to be really careful you might discard milk from any session where you somehow got milk into the tubing.

anyways, I would replace the parts mostly b/c they wear down and make the pump less effective. I pumped about 6 times a day for a year and had to replace almost everything at least once to keep the pump working it's best.

Lastly, HIV only can live outside the body for a short time... even hepatitis can only survive around 10 days. So unless your taking turns sharing the pump I'm not sure how much risk could really exist.

That's just my opinion, I know it goes against the manufacter and LLL.
Raene's Avatar Raene 02:18 PM 03-18-2009
Great info, Chi Mama. I have always thought the manufacturing companies just say that so you'll buy a new one and they'll make money off of more people. Not sure about LLL though and their beliefs.
LaughingHyena's Avatar LaughingHyena 02:21 PM 03-18-2009
While I don't think it is a big risk I just think it would always be on my mind. I would worry too much (I am a worrier though).

I don't know what I would do if I wasn't able to afford a new pump.

That said does this apply to manual pumps too? Since the whole of my Avent pump goes in the steriliser it seems that it should be OK.
Say's Avatar Say 02:23 PM 03-18-2009
My best friend gave me her Medela Advanced Pump n' Style. I bought all new tubing and breast shields and when I phoned Medela and told them it was used, they told me how to clean the inside membrane in case it had accumulated dust.

It's just all a question of liability. The same way all Medela, Gerber and other baby products (bottles, nipples, etc) say to boil them for ten minutes before use - everyone just wants to make absolutely certain beyond a paranoid doubt that they aren't responsible for anything. It also doesn't make much business sense to tell people they can be resold, especially when they cost between $350 and $400 new.

Of course, I can see why LLL and the FDA would say 'no' based on hypothetical possible risks under certain circumstances, even if there has never been a single, documented case of a problem. I just can't worry that much!
Raene's Avatar Raene 02:40 PM 03-18-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaughingHyena View Post
That said does this apply to manual pumps too? Since the whole of my Avent pump goes in the steriliser it seems that it should be OK.
Good point, but my issue is that I breastfed my daughter 2 1/2 yrs, but NEVER could I get a drop out with a pump...whether it be hand pump or Pump In Style.

I do think maybe this time could be different, but I am doubtful that a handpump would suffice.
mclisa's Avatar mclisa 02:42 PM 03-18-2009
I did. I have one at home and one at work.
kriket's Avatar kriket 03:21 PM 03-18-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raene View Post
Yeah, me too...finances are tight. But I do have the option of renting a pump from our local diaper store and they charge a really reasonable rate (hospital grade).
oh, that sounds like a good idea! I wonder what they would charge! I have also heard that state health care will purchase a pump for you if your DR writes a prescription. I've been battling if I want to go that route or not.
ChetMC's Avatar ChetMC 03:53 PM 03-18-2009
A friend of mine nearly stopped breastfeeding. It was desperately painful, and she nursed in agony for months. Eventually, they figured out that she had yeast even though the baby had no symptoms. I strongly suspect that she got it from the used pump she had. The motor can't be sterilized, but if you're replacing everything down to the motor you might as well buy a new pump.

The other issue is the lifespan of a pump. I'd rather pay $200 to $300 for a double electric pump and have the whole lifespan to use it than pay $100 for a used pump and only get six months or a year out of it, or less. A mom posted here a couple of months back about buying a used pump and the motor dying right after she bought it. I've certainly read posts from moms who had their double electric last for four years of daily use, but I'm not under the impression that they're engineered for that. I thought that anything beyond two years of daily pumping was considered a bonus.
chi_mama's Avatar chi_mama 04:26 PM 03-18-2009
Quote:
The motor can't be sterilized, but if you're replacing everything down to the motor you might as well buy a new pump.
actually you should be able to replace everything for about $50

Quote:
The other issue is the lifespan of a pump. I'd rather pay $200 to $300 for a double electric pump and have the whole lifespan to use it than pay $100 for a used pump and only get six months or a year out of it, or less.
I totally agree with this. If your going to buy a used pump it should be one that was used less. I gave mine away after 14 months of pumping 6 times a day/4 days a week. I didn't feel right selling it. The person I gave it so only pumps about 10 times a week and it's still working after 12 months.

But unless your planning on pumping for a couple of years I think a used one if fine. Even a new pump is probably not going to get you through several children anyways.
ChetMC's Avatar ChetMC 04:33 PM 03-18-2009
[QUOTE=chi_mama;13387942]actually you should be able to replace everything for about $50[/QUOTE

The replacement motor used to be $90. Where can you get it for less? Mine is making a weird noise, and I'm worried that it won't hold out for baby four.
2xy's Avatar 2xy 04:46 PM 03-18-2009
Okay....say the inner guts of the pump get sprayed with BM.

If it's your own pump, and it's your BM, wouldn't bacteria grow in it? Wouldn't that be a risk, too?

Seems to me that the only milk making its way into the receptacle is the milk in the tubing. If milk particles from the inner workings made their way back into the tubing, then I'd be worried even if it was my own, brand new pump!

I don't see how someone else's BM particles in the motor are going to get into the tubing and into whatever container you're collecting milk in.

Am I making sense? I'm having difficulty conveying exactly what I mean.
chi_mama's Avatar chi_mama 04:55 PM 03-18-2009
Quote:
The replacement motor used to be $90. Where can you get it for less?
oh, oops, I meant everything else... tubes, shields, flanges etc... Actually I didn't know you could replace the motor. cool.

Okay so I see your point. If your going to pay $100 and really replace everything then you may as well pay the $300 for a new one.
Bellabaz's Avatar Bellabaz 05:07 PM 03-18-2009
I got my pump for free from my sil. She only used it a little. I got new flanges b/c the ones that came iwth it weren't my size and sterilized the tubing. The milk doesn't go through the whole pump. there is no need to replace the motor etc. It wasn't a big deal to me and I exclusively pumped for a year and we were fine.
KBinSATX's Avatar KBinSATX 05:16 PM 03-18-2009
No I wouldn't buy a used pump. I'd rather have a new manual than a used electric pump.
That being said though I work from home and my kids just get it straight from the boob so I am not as desperate for a really efficient pump system as somebody that works away from home and has to get lots of milk pumped.
Dahlea's Avatar Dahlea 05:51 PM 03-18-2009
yes but i bought new parts and it was from someone i know.
eastkygal's Avatar eastkygal 07:17 PM 03-18-2009
I used my step-sister's/best friend's Medela and her tubing, but I would buy new tubing for any one else's pump. YKWIM.
HairyArmpits's Avatar HairyArmpits 01:10 AM 03-19-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by LittleBlessings View Post
I have in the past purchased a used pump and did not think anything of it. I was unaware of the risks.
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