Medela vs Ameda? Hands free pumping vs. regular pumping? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 3 Old 10-25-2011, 11:24 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi, I'm new to these boards and have a question.


I own an Ameda pump and have been happy with it. I need to get another pump for work and one girlfriend is offering to give me her Ameda, another offering to give me her Medela. I'm feeling pretty lucky to have these kinds of choices but am torn about what to do. I know I can easily use my friend's Ameda and buy the tubing and parts for it, and it would be safe but my friend's Medela is freestyle, so I could return emails while I pump at work, which would be lovely.


However, when I called Medela, they said that their pumps should not be used between moms, as it can transmit viruses, and the diaphragm cannot be sterilized. Is this really the case for Medela?! They said only hospital grade pumps can be used by multiple moms. :(


Also, are handsfree pumps less effective than the regular kind that you hold do your breast? I don't want to jeopordize my output for a few emails.




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#2 of 3 Old 11-01-2011, 06:36 PM
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Most pumps that are sold for home use are considered single-user.  Unless every part that could contact milk can be sterilized, there is the possibility of infection being transmitted by a used pump.  No pump manufacturer is going to accept the liability associated with saying that it's okay to share pumps unless everything can for certain be sterile.  For this reason, very few pumps are considered multi-user; mostly just hospital-grade rental pumps, because all of the parts that are not replaceable are sealed.  I'm fairly certain the Ameda that your friend is offering is considered single-user as well, you could check their website to be certain (Ameda's website lists all their Purely YOurs pumps, for example, as being single user, even though the diaphragm is supposedly sealed).  That being said, many moms do share or purchase used pumps.  It's hard to quantify the risk, and you'll have to decide on your own what your comfort level is.  Besides the risk of disease transmission, most pumps are designed to last for single part-time use; in other words, the motor is going to last for pumping at work for one or two babies for about a year each.  If your friends' pumps have been used extensively, they may not be as effective.  More info on used pumps:,


As far as hands-free, you can make any pump hands-free.  There are bras you can purchase specially designed to hold the flanges in place.  You can do-it-yourself by cutting slits in a supportive jogging-style bra.  There's a rubber band trick:   You might give these techniques a try before deciding on spending money for a hands-free pump. 


Some moms do find that their output decreases with hands-free pumping because their attention is on something else, instead of thinking about their baby and milk production.  Other moms actually have more success if they are distracted and not worrying about pump output.  You'll have to see what works best for you!

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#3 of 3 Old 11-03-2011, 12:12 PM
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If the ameda pump is the same as yours or uses the same hygenikit as yours, i would go with that. That way if u just buy a new hygienikit to use with the friend's pump u have two sets of interchangable parts in case one set breaks or something. Also, if u are concerned about germs or transmitting disease etc then i think the ameda is the better choice because of it's construction and the diaphram. However, personally if i knew the friend really well, and knew them to be healthy and have undergone all the usual screenung during pregnancy, i would be fine with it and would just use the same parts as your friend.
I'm confused about the hands free part, does ur medela friend have a hands free bra or something? If so, u could still borrow that from her and use it with the ameda, but u may find that to be as much trouble getting resituated then just quickly pumping.
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