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Lactation Consultant


A lactation consultant or specialist is often a nurse who has been trained to teach and advise women about breast-feeding. Lactation consultants may be associated with birth units in hospitals.

Lactation consultants are often most helpful for women who:

  • Have never breast-fed before.
  • Have had previous problems breast-feeding.
  • Have a chronic health problem, such as diabetes.
  • Have had breast surgery.
  • Are breast-feeding more than one child.
  • Plan to breast-feed while working outside the home.
  • Need help using a breast pump.
  • Have problems with breast or nipple pain.
  • Have a baby who does not seem to be breast-feeding well.
  • Have a special-needs baby, such as one who was born premature or with a health problem that may interfere with breast-feeding.
ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerSarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerMary Robbins, RNC, IBCLC - Lactation Consultant
Last RevisedApril 13, 2011

eMedicineHealth Medical Reference from Healthwise

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