Malinda Webb, MD, FAAP
I hope that you had a wonderful Breastfeeding Month in August!
Most of you probably have a few medical apps that you find indispensible or at least helpful in your day to day practice. There are a few breastfeeding related ones that you should consider adding to your devices.
One of the most useful to all practitioners is the NIH LactMed. This is a free app that has information on medications and supplements. It provides information on effects on infants as well as lactation itself. You can also find alternative drugs for a specific condition. I try to share this with all specialties as many times it is just easier to tell moms not to breastfeed rather than research the medication. Other providers may not realize how important it is not to disrupt breastfeeding if not necessary.
Along those same lines is the app version of Dr. Thomas Hale’s book, Medications and Mothers’ Milk. His is InfantRisk Center for Health Care Providers. You must purchase this app, but it is an excellent resource for even more information. You can send questions as needed. There is a companion for mothers called MommyMeds. It only costs $3.99, and may save those moms who have lots of questions some valuable time while providing the most reliable information.
Breastfeeding Management 2 from the Massachusetts Breastfeeding Coalition does have some good resources. I use this one mostly for its weight loss calculator. Plug in birthweight and today’s weight for an accurate calculation of percentage lost.
Bilirubin risk calculators are also very helpful. I use BiliCalc, probably because it was free, but there are a variety of apps that all calculate risk and treatment indications based on the AAP 2004 “Management of Hyperbilirubinemia in Infants Greater Than 35 Weeks of Age.”
There are dozens of apps for moms to track their breastfeeding. Neither I, nor the Breastfeeding Resource Center have a specific recommendation, but be sure that your families are aware of the changes in length of breastfeeding and stool output that will occur as the infant matures. Trackers may or may not take this into account.
If you have apps that you have found useful for supporting breastfeeding, please share those with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.