Tags: breastfeeding | mom | pot | smoking | daughter

Breastfeeding: Mom, Pot Smoker Still Plans to Nurse Preemie Daughter

By    |   Monday, 11 Aug 2014 05:37 PM

A Portland, Oregon, mom who smokes pot said she plans to breastfeed her premature daughter despite her doctor’s advice not to do so while she is using medical marijuana.

Crystal Cain’s daughter Karrisma was born eight weeks premature on Wednesday, but is doing well and is off of all breathing machines.

Cain told KOMO News that she planned to breastfeed because it is good for the baby’s immune system, but hospital personnel won’t let her do so while the baby is there.

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“We had the mom sign a waiver acknowledging the use of marijuana and the potential risks involved in it,” Dr. Charles Kilo, Oregon Health Science University’s chief medical officer, told KOMO.

But Cain said she’s not concerned that marijuana might hurt her daughter.

“There are several studies that indicate that it doesn't, it can't transfer through your milk ducts. Your body automatically kind of filters it,” Cain told KOMO.

However, clinical studies of breastfeeding infants while using marijuana found that THC, the active ingredient in marijuana that makes people high, does typically carry through the breastmilk to the baby and is found in the baby’s urine two to three weeks later, according to ClinicalLactation.org.

What is unclear is what kind of impact THC or marijuana has on babies and their development and there aren’t very many studies on the subject. The smaller studies that are available indicate varying impacts on babies, although at least one found slower motor development, the MamaBirth blog noted. Another small study found no impact.

A National Institutes of Health report also cited the fact that there are few studies to determine effects on the baby and recommended that mothers do not use marijuana during pregnancy or breastfeeding.

Cain told KOMO that she thinks more hospitals will have to confront this issue as the use of marijuana increases.

"I'm saying there's not enough information because nobody tests it,” Cain told KOMO. "It's such a touchy subject that nobody wants to mess with it."

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A Portland, Oregon, mom who smokes pot said she plans to breastfeed her premature daughter despite her doctor's advice not to do so while she is using medical marijuana.
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2014-37-11
Monday, 11 Aug 2014 05:37 PM
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