On day 10 after giving birth, I developed a fever. I was feeling fine all day and then suddenly, after taking a nap, I started feeling warm. Then, I developed muscle aches. I took my temp and it was 100.4F. This is one of those times when knowing too much is harmful. My mind immediately jumped to terrible complications of surgery. I was sure that I had an infection in my belly or in my bloodstream. I thought that I would need to go to the hospital, I may need IV antibiotics, I may need another surgery. What if I had to stop breastfeeding because the antibiotics they would put me on wouldn’t be compatible with breastfeeding?

With all these fears in mind, I called my OBGYN. She asked me how I was doing. I said I was feeling ok overall. No signs of a cold, incision wasn’t too painful and didn’t look red, no smelly discharge. She said I probably had mastitis. I protested because my breast wasn’t warm, it wasn’t red, it wasn’t painful. However, we decided to start Keflex (first choice for mastitis and also compatible with breastfeeding) and monitor what happens over the next 24 hours.

Two hours later, my breast was red, painful, and warm. She was right. I took the whole course of the Keflex and pumped like crazy (every 2 hours). I massaged the VERY painful area to empty the breast of milk. Fever was gone in about 24 hours and the pain lasted several days.