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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A few years ago before becoming pg, I bought a medela pump in style at a garage sale from someone I did not know. I had no idea these pumps were not supposed to be reused at the time. Right after DD was born I found out that that pump isn't a closed system and should not be reused. The pump had barely been used at all, but still, I got paranoid about it and wouldn't use it since I didn't know the lady. So, it now sits in my utility room waiting for me to figure out what to do with it. If I wouldn't use it for my child, how can I in good conscience give it to someone else to? But, am I just being paranoid about it? I have OCD, so I'm factoring that into my decision here, as I tend to latch onto something to obsess about and can't let it go. If I feel I can chalk my concern about this pump up to OCD, then I could give it to someone else. It seems a shame to just throw something like that away. What would you do.
 

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Maybe you could donate it but provide the disclaimer that the manufacture doesn't recommend that this pump be used for multiple ppl and then let someone else make the decision for themselves of whether they want to take the risk.

I have often wondered just how dangerous a used pump really is.
First, I don't think their is a very good likelihood of the milk you are pumping getting contaminated (provided you have replaced all the tubing etc). If it did get contaminated with old breast milk I really don't see how it would be any worse than it getting contaminated with my old breast milk. I have heard the argument that you can get HIV or Hepatitis or other scary diseases that are passed through breast milk. I don't know how long those diseases could survive in dried up breast milk outside of the body. I would think that after several months of the pump being stored then any disease organisms would die on their own. They can't survive forever, or can they?

That is just my common sense speculation. I could be totally wrong. Maybe HIV can survive in a couple drops of dried breast milk for years. I would research it more thoroughly before deciding to use one, personally.

But I think that the companies who make these expensive pumps have a lot of financial motivation to tell us how dangerous it is to get a used one. They want another $300...of COURSE they don't want you to get a used one
 

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I also have a pump sitting in my closet that I don't know what to do with. I can't use it because I can't get any milk out with it and we're a bit short on cash so it'd be nice to sell it on Ebay. It's practically new.

I think what I'm going to do is sell it but obviously without the actual nipple shields and tubes and such. You can buy those separately. Still, the pump is like 300$ and the kit is like $80. I will put a disclaimer on it saying that it HAS been used. But to the best of my knowledge, nothing ever got INTO the pump. There was a bit of condensation at the top of the tubing but it never made it even close to the pump itself. And I know I'm disease free so I guess they'll have to take my word for it anyway.

But I'm going to wait until after this one is born. Maybe once I have an established supply, maybe, MAYBE I can pump. It didn't work this time but there's a SLIGHT chance that I can use it again. But after that.... Ebay time. Or some donation site.
 

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I've got one too.

With my first dd I borrowed a medela pis from a very close friend of the family. I bought my own parts and it was great. When I found out I was preggo again her pump wasn't available to me, so when I found a pis at a second hand store for $2 I grabbed it (it was really marked $4, but it was half price day
). It was in the box all packaged up with many extras with it. It looks like it was barely used... car adapter and storage bags not even opened. I went ahead and ordered new sheilds and tubes etc... from medela. I was so excited about my find.

Then I got to reading on mdc and found out about the single user thing. I researched it a bit and found out that they're not supposed to be used by different people. Dh and I discussed it and decided to buy a new one. Now the second hand one is just sitting in the spare bedroom taking up space. I have no idea what to do with it.


I'm not ocd, but I think about it often... how much of a risk is it really? I wonder if it would be ok for just pump and dump?
 

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I don't know. I tried selling my pump (which didn't work for me), on ebay without success. My reserve was $50 and nobody ever bid a penny on it
So, it sits in my house still. I think its probably going to the goodwill. Maybe they can get it to someone who has a real need...
 

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I sold my old one - with the disclaimer that I used it (only twice). I had a few interested people and sold it. I think if you replace all the parts (tubing, shields) you remove risk but to each their own. you can put it for sale and let people make their own decisions. Its easier and cheaper for people who have never pumped to find out if it will work this way (buying used) rather than buying a brand new one.
 

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For me, I would appply the same criteria to used pumps as I would unscreened blood or milk donations for my DC.

This may seem inconsistent but on the other hand I would give a pump that only I had used because I know it's free of any pathogens because I know my history and because I actually took a blood test when I became a milk donor.

I would not buy or borrow a used pump from someone that I would not take a milk or blood donation from. It's just not worth the risk, however miniscule it might seem.

JMO, ~Cath
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for all the replies!

It just seems a shame to throw something like that away, but I certainly wouldn't want to put anyone's baby at risk.

On the pathogen/time thing. I thought I remembered reading somewhere that they have found Hepatitis virus on countertops for months after contamination. I believe HIV is relatively fragile that way but is VERY transmittable thru BM (I believe something like 1 in 4?).
 
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