home
RSS
Buying breast milk online? Beware
Breast milk purchased from Internet social media sites may contain bacteria such as salmonella, a new study shows.
October 21st, 2013
09:40 AM ET

Buying breast milk online? Beware

Donated breast milk is "liquid gold at our house,” says Stacy Richards, 37.

The liquid gold is for Simeon, Richards' adopted 11-month-old son. He was born with Down syndrome and suffers from chronic lung disease. Richards believes "breast is best" but couldn't breastfeed, so she turned to the next best thing.

Initially, she sought milk on community milk sharing sites, like “Eats on Feets,” and “Human Milk 4 Human Babies,” but didn’t feel comfortable getting milk from strangers. “We didn’t know who those women were. They didn’t have a safety net,” said Richards. Instead, she relied on trusted friends.

Richards had every right to worry, according to a new study published Monday in the journal Pediatrics. The study found milk bought off of the Internet through social media sites was more than twice as likely to be contaminated with infection-causing bacteria and three times more likely to contain salmonella than milk from the Human Milk Banking Association of North America (HMBNA). While only 5% of the HMBNA milk tested positive for herpes viruses, 21% of milk from the Internet contained bacteria and viruses.

HMBNA consists of 16 self-regulated, nonprofit milk banks across North America and has pre-screened donors. The milk banks further pasteurize the milk to ensure its safety.

But HMBNA milk isn’t always available to everyone. Babies that are the neediest, like preemies and those born with special conditions, receive priority, say Kim Updegrove, HMBNA president, “In 2012, our milk banks dispensed 2.5 million ounces of human milk. Three-quarters went to hospitals in every state in the country; the remaining quarter went to outpatients, largely babies from the NICU that were unable to tolerate formula.”

Authors of the study also found that 74% of the milk purchased from the Internet failed to meet HMBNA criteria before pasteurization.

This is of particular concern for pre-term babies, said Dr. Lisa Thebner, a pediatrician in New York City. “They are more vulnerable, their immune systems are more immature, and they can’t fight off infection like full-term babies,” said Thebner, who was not associated with the study.

Sarah Keim, lead author of the study and a researcher at Nationwide Children's Hospital, was surprised by the differences between the 101 samples bought over the Internet and the 20 samples from the HMBNA banks. Shipping, or "the number of days it took to get there," was a significant factor, she said.

In fact, the study found that each additional shipping day resulted in increased bacteria counts. About half of the samples arrived in two days, and 19% of the shipped milk didn’t have any sort of ice pack or cooling agent.

Emma Kwasnica, founder of Human Milk 4 Human Babies, said the study in itself was problematic, because most milk is donated without profit, at a local community level, and rarely is transported for several days to get to a recipient.

Kwasnica did agree that the study showed how “milk is expressed, stored, and transported is important.”

The American Academy of Pediatrics and the FDA both recommend against using breast milk directly from a donor or the Internet, because of the safety risks.

“The bottom line is, if you are going to get milk from an unknown source, you open that baggie of milk and you have to decide ... given the consequences are pretty serious, I just don’t think it’s worth the risk,” said Keim. Instead, she recommended using milk from a bank, or donating to a bank, knowing that it undergoes additional safety measures.

“We recognize there’s a risk, but we felt the risk outweighed the benefits," Richards said.

If you do consider milk sharing, the FDA says to make sure to:
- consult your pediatrician
- consider the risks
- do not use milk directly sourced from individuals or the Internet
- If you decide to milk share, only use a source that has been screened and take whatever precautions to ensure its safety.


soundoff (765 Responses)
  1. Seo Marketing California

    This page truly has all the information I needed concerning this subject and didn’t know who to ask.

    http://www.cnlhotelsandresorts.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=affordableranking.com

    May 11, 2021 at 13:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Social Media Marketing Companies Near Me

    http://paper-doll.com/func-misc.php?func=db_click&site=http://lifebusinessfitness.com

    May 11, 2021 at 15:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Social Media Marketing Orange County

    http://mpcc.org/ccb-event/?url=http://cleanuponlinereputation.com

    May 11, 2021 at 16:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. RV Toilets Riverside

    It’s hard to find experienced people for this subject, but you seem like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

    http://negotiationstrategy.org/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=

    May 11, 2021 at 19:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Rachele Macon

    This was awesome! I would like you to clean up all this spam though

    https://www.linkedin.com/in/yusuf-hanafy-82493b183

    May 11, 2021 at 19:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. RV Mattresses Los Angeles

    This site definitely has all of the info I wanted concerning this subject and didn’t know who to ask.

    http://www.praetorians.ws/goto/http://youtube.com/channel/UCGb9aC76nAmfzNsCru2KBHA/videos

    May 12, 2021 at 00:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. camper restoration near me

    https://press.husqvarna-motorcycles.com/Mailing_Redirect.aspx?mailingid=37014&email=tomwebb@me.com&checkid=3ce553ad-a4c8-4cff-8157-9d296087b89f&redirect=https://ocrv.vip/toy-hauler-trailer-collision-repair-shop-near-me

    May 12, 2021 at 02:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. commercial truck painting near me

    This page certainly has all the information and facts I wanted about this subject and didn’t know who to ask.

    https://igert2011.videohall.com/to_client?target=https://youtube.com/watch?v=0eb9oP6XDs0

    May 12, 2021 at 02:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. RV Paint Shop Orange County

    http://www.taitoitasuomi.fi/campaigns/marklink?id=54c0c2d3e4b0e12fa3c89a09&link=http://youtube.com/channel/UChUH5GdtSzHx6V02C90mnfQ/videos

    May 12, 2021 at 04:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. rv parts san diego ca

    Hi, I do believe this is a great website. I stumbledupon it 😉 I am going to revisit yet again since I book marked it. Money and freedom is the greatest way to change, may you be rich and continue to help others.

    https://gogvo.com/redir.php?url=https://theocrv.com/rv-repair-shop-costa-mesa-california

    May 12, 2021 at 07:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. RV Blinds California

    http://www.ahavathtorah.org/track.php?id=9b1e8128540e45288905f4936bd498eb&color=b3b3b5&url=http://www.yelp.com/biz/ocrv-center-anaheim

    May 12, 2021 at 10:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Sprinter Repair Shops Near Me

    This web site definitely has all the info I needed about this subject and didn’t know who to ask.

    https://moshtix.com.au/v2/ForceDesktopView?callingUrl=https://sprintervanrepairshop.com/sprinter-van-conversion-shop-near-me

    May 12, 2021 at 10:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. bus repair shop

    A motivating discussion is worth comment. I think that you should write more on this issue, it may not be a taboo subject but typically folks don't speak about these subjects. To the next! Kind regards!!

    https://www.adultwork.com/SetReferrerCookie.asp?SelUserID=602668&ReferringURL=&TargetURL=https://ocrv.rocks/motorhome-driver-seat-repair-near-me

    May 12, 2021 at 12:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Van Repair

    http://www.gmwebsite.com/web/redirect.asp?url=https://fleetservicerepairshop.com/limo-van-repair-shop-near-me

    May 12, 2021 at 12:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. RV Technician California

    http://taicep.biz/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=instagram.com/ocrvcenter

    May 12, 2021 at 16:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Sprinter 2500 Front Glass Repair

    http://yellowpages.staradvertiser.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=fleettruckrepairshop.com/promaster-van-conversion-shop-near-me

    May 12, 2021 at 18:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Dodge Sprinter Vacuum Pump Repair

    The next time I read a blog, I hope that it does not disappoint me as much as this one. After all, Yes, it was my choice to read through, but I genuinely thought you would probably have something interesting to talk about. All I hear is a bunch of whining about something you can fix if you were not too busy seeking attention.

    https://office.builderall.com/us/franchise/share/1504715/?p1=rd&p2=https://fleetvehiclerepairshop.com/sprinter-van-frame-repair-shop-near-me

    May 12, 2021 at 18:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. safeco windshield repair

    This is a topic that's close to my heart... Best wishes! Exactly where are your contact details though?

    http://m.sport.hir24.hu/redirect?url=http://youtube.com/watch?v=13dVMPy3CQE

    May 12, 2021 at 20:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. RV Dashboard Orange County

    https://www.smh-cvhcfasthealth.com/goto.php?url=

    May 12, 2021 at 22:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. trailer repair orange county

    Wonderful post! We will be linking to this particularly great article on our site. Keep up the great writing.

    http://clevacances032.clevacances.com/stat.php?langue=fr&id_location=HLOMIP032MS00786&agrement=32MS00786&type_location=meuble&id_departement=032&acces_site=1&url=https://ocrvandtrucks.com/rv-flooring-repair-near-me

    May 12, 2021 at 23:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Sprinter Repair Mechanics

    https://surveys.montclair.edu/survey/preview.jsp?surveyid=1326825217719&url=https://fleetautorepairshop.com/delivery-van-repair-shop-near-me

    May 13, 2021 at 07:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. camper repair center

    Excellent site you have got here.. It’s hard to find high-quality writing like yours nowadays. I really appreciate individuals like you! Take care!!

    https://www.brandonsun.com/s?action=editReg&rurl=http://youtube.com/watch?v=fVNakO5S-N0

    May 13, 2021 at 07:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. oc truck shop

    You ought to take part in a contest for one of the highest quality blogs on the internet. I am going to highly recommend this website!

    https://adhq.com/_track_clicks?hqid=472&bid=23208&type=website&campaign=BMD&source=acoustical-ceiling&url=https://youtube.com/watch?v=BCzelGN1dAA

    May 13, 2021 at 08:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Ford Connect Van Floor Repair

    http://local.kxlf.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=boxtruckrepairshop.com/sprinter-van-restoration-shop-near-me

    May 13, 2021 at 09:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. reupholstery services near me

    http://uk.youtuberepeater.com/watch?v=M1EPfakfST0

    May 13, 2021 at 10:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. RV Furniture Near Me

    https://1866getcredit.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=yelp.com/biz/ocrv-center-yorba-linda

    May 13, 2021 at 11:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. RV Batteries Orange County

    I'd like to thank you for the efforts you have put in penning this blog. I'm hoping to view the same high-grade content from you later on as well. In truth, your creative writing abilities has encouraged me to get my own, personal site now 😉

    https://www.southsouthfacility.org/redirect.php?redirect=https://goo.gl/maps/iCzoZ1dDPjhG6Dsh6

    May 13, 2021 at 12:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. RV Shades Riverside

    The very next time I read a blog, Hopefully it doesn't disappoint me just as much as this particular one. After all, Yes, it was my choice to read through, but I really thought you'd have something useful to talk about. All I hear is a bunch of crying about something you could fix if you were not too busy seeking attention.

    http://www.biletnn.ru/event_buy.php?url=http://www.instagram.com/ocrvcenter

    May 13, 2021 at 17:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. rv a/c repair near me

    Everything is very open with a clear clarification of the challenges. It was truly informative. Your website is useful. Many thanks for sharing!

    https://advtest.exibart.com/adv/adv.php?id_banner=7201&link=https://ocrvcenter.info/motorhome-blinds-repair-near-me

    May 13, 2021 at 18:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. roof repairs orange county ca

    Spot on with this write-up, I absolutely believe that this amazing site needs a lot more attention. I’ll probably be returning to read through more, thanks for the information!

    http://media.vol.at/weiterleitung/redirect.asp?id=https://ocrv.fun/rv-repair-shop-irvine-california

    May 13, 2021 at 20:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. motorhome remodeling companies

    https://www.htcdev.com/?URL=https://youtube.com/watch?v=jv8_YNJJsIA

    May 13, 2021 at 21:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. RV Furniture Orange County

    http://www.wyng.com/r.psp?url=http://www.facebook.com/ocrvcenter

    May 14, 2021 at 01:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. RV Restoration Orange County

    http://www.scan-audit.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=youtube.com/channel/UCGb9aC76nAmfzNsCru2KBHA/videos

    May 14, 2021 at 07:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. la palma motorhome

    https://www.anonym.to/?https://ocrv.vip/class-c-collision-repair-shop-near-me

    May 14, 2021 at 11:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. rv repair service

    Hey there! I simply want to give you a huge thumbs up for your excellent information you've got here on this post. I'll be coming back to your website for more soon.

    &cp_1=washington&cp_2=myteams-nbc-sports&cp_3=nbcsphi1356

    May 14, 2021 at 11:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. truck and trailer repair shops near me

    Pretty! This has been an extremely wonderful article. Many thanks for supplying this info.

    https://www.grantrequest.com/SID_1268/default4.asp?SA=EXIT&url=https://ocrv.me/prevost-rv-collision-repair-paint-shop-near-me-orange-county

    May 14, 2021 at 13:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. houses for sale near my area

    This is a topic which is close to my heart... Take care! Exactly where are your contact details though?

    http://www.drugoffice.gov.hk/gb/unigb/www.meganleary.com

    May 14, 2021 at 16:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. real estate for sale wallace idaho

    This web site truly has all of the info I needed about this subject and didn’t know who to ask.

    https://l-www.sitepal.com/affiliates/entry/?spdirect=1&affId=75895&promotionId=17691&link=https://meganleary.com

    May 14, 2021 at 17:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. rv supply near me

    http://www.spacioclub.ru/forum_script/url/?go=http://www.carsonrvexperience.com

    May 14, 2021 at 18:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. homes for sale riverstone

    https://keyweb.vn/redirect.php?url=https://meganleary.com

    May 14, 2021 at 19:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Computer Glasses

    It’s difficult to find experienced people in this particular topic, however, you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

    http://www.kanazawa-navi.com/navi/rank.cgi?mode=link&id=725&url=https://arizonasvision.com/

    May 14, 2021 at 19:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. Oakley Prescription Sunglasses

    Spot on with this write-up, I absolutely believe this amazing site needs a lot more attention. I’ll probably be returning to read more, thanks for the advice!

    https://cdn.embedded.com/common/jumplink.php?target=http://arizonasvision.com

    May 14, 2021 at 19:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. rv repair shops near my location

    https://www.biyougeka.esthetic-esthe.com/rank.cgi?mode=link&id=848&url=https://ocrvart.com/

    May 14, 2021 at 20:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. houses for sale spirit lake idaho

    This page really has all the information I needed concerning this subject and didn’t know who to ask.

    https://www.videoder.com/af/media?mode=2&url=http://meganleary.com/

    May 14, 2021 at 20:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Maserati Xvideos

    Saved as a favorite, I love your website!

    https://finalcashback.net/link.php?i=4ec4a98f6a6b4&m=54a556a3a9f3e&guid=ON&url=https://club-maserati.com

    May 14, 2021 at 20:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. property for sale spirit lake idaho

    Your style is so unique in comparison to other people I have read stuff from. I appreciate you for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess I will just bookmark this page.

    https://reaaldierenzorg.nl/bitrix/rk.php?goto=http://meganleary.com

    May 15, 2021 at 00:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Vision Center

    http://www.php-api.engageya.com/oper/https_redirect.php?url=https://arizonasvision.com/

    May 15, 2021 at 04:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. toad truck near me

    http://www.fireprotection.org.nz/Redirect.aspx?destination=https://ocrvmotorsports.life/

    May 15, 2021 at 05:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. homes for sale coeur d alene id

    Right here is the perfect blog for everyone who hopes to find out about this topic. You realize a whole lot its almost hard to argue with you (not that I actually will need to…HaHa). You definitely put a brand new spin on a topic which has been written about for ages. Wonderful stuff, just wonderful!

    http://www.euroweb.com/aspmoduli/statistiche/vaiurl.asp?url=https://meganleary.com/

    May 15, 2021 at 05:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. real estate for sale sandpoint id

    Oh my goodness! Awesome article dude! Thank you, However I am experiencing difficulties with your RSS. I don’t know the reason why I can't subscribe to it. Is there anyone else getting identical RSS problems? Anybody who knows the answer can you kindly respond? Thanks!!

    http://old.yansk.ru/redirect.html?link=https://meganleary.com

    May 15, 2021 at 09:24 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15

Post a comment


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.