Edie Boxman and Judie Gibel, GPLN Coordinators
La Leche League (LLL) was formed in 1956. LLL has long been on the front line of providing support for breastfeeding mothers and parents. Up-to-date, culturally appropriate resources are essential in providing that support. The needs of babies have not changed over the years, but society and the environment for the breastfeeding dyad have changed. They will undoubtedly continue to change. New information and research about breastfeeding are published each year. Keeping up to date to help breastfeeding families is an ongoing process.
Breastfeeding Info A-Z
The Breastfeeding Info A-Z is located on the LLLI website. It addresses frequently asked questions of mothers, parents, and healthcare professionals. LLL does not provide medical advice. It shares research-based information, stories, and resources.
Global Professional Liaison Network
The Global Professional Liaison Network( GPLN) is a group of 25 dedicated LLL Leaders from around the world. They are updating the Breastfeeding Info A-Z articles. One of the newest articles is Cancer: Diagnostic Tests, Therapeutic Procedures and Treatment While Breastfeeding. The article was a group effort: a number of Leaders researched and contributed the latest information available on the subject. Several knowledgeable doctors also reviewed the article, made suggestions, and added to it.
Lumps and Breast Imaging
The GPLN updated a related article, Lumps and Breast Imaging. These articles include new information about the importance of postpartum diagnostic imaging for any lumps or breast changes. In the past, there has often been an assumption that mothers who are breastfeeding do not need to have imaging on areas of concern. Unfortunately, breast cancer can occur while breastfeeding, so the article encourages imaging of any changes that last more than a few days, just to be safe. Information about realistic expectations of continued breastfeeding after radiation therapy and chemotherapy has been updated.
Other recent and upcoming articles
Previously, the GPLN updated an article on anesthesia – I am having surgery which discusses the safety of nursing/pumping after the mother is fully awake and aware. Other recently updated articles include Caffeine, and Inverted Nipples.
Soon to be published topics include Babies Who Want To Be Held; Contaminants and “forever” chemicals; Chylothorax and the Use of Human Milk; and HIV. The GPLN is working on adding and/or updating information on bras, diabetes, cannabis, mastitis, skin-to-skin contact, and thrush.
You may notice that in some A to Z categories links are provided to similar or related articles in languages other than English from LLL entity websites. We plan to expand this feature.
The GPLN is a diverse and collegial group that has found common ground in our interest in identifying relevant evidence-based breastfeeding research and communicating it clearly. We work together virtually through the online platform used by the LLLI Board of Directors and other LLLI forums. LLL Leaders who might be interested in joining the GPLN are invited to contact GPLN@llli.org.