Summer’s almost here! Ladies, have you changed out your Hygeia bacteriostatic filter yet?
Seems like just a few short weeks ago that we were placing wagers around the office about if the historic Boston Winter of 2015 snowpack would recede by Mother’s Day or the Fourth of July. The snow is gone, replaced already by some hot, humid, summer-like weather. Oh mythical Spring, whither hast thee gone? I’m still hopeful that we will experience some moderate weather before plunging into our typical Precambrian dog days of summer. With Memorial Day Weekend upon us, the symbolic start to the summer season, seasonal considerations come onto our collective radar screen. And while you may be weighing the pros and cons of SPF factors vs. vitamin D loading, those of us on staff at Lactation Care are pondering the effects of summer weather for our clientele.
Like any self-respecting pump geek, my thoughts always turn to Hygeia’s bacteriostatic filters when the dew point rises. For those not in the know, the bacteriostatic filters are a critical component of the Hygeia line of multiple user pumps which includes the very popular personal use models known as the Q, Enjoy EXT, and LBI.
The bacteriostatic filter on the Hygeia line of pumps is a 5 micron mesh overlaid 5 times to create a closed pumping system that is safe for multiple users, provided each user saddles up to the pump with her own kit, tubing and filter. According to Cindy Curtis, RN, IBCLC, CCE, CD in an article entitled “Used Breast Pumps” on breastfeedingonline.com, closed system pumps, when properly used, can protect mothers from the pathogens that can be found in mother’s milk or blood: nasties such as HIV, CMV, and hepatitis. The Hygeia bacteriostatic filter can also prevent the more mundane mold, mildew and yeast spores from entering the pump motor.
This wonderful feature, the filter, is designed to self-seal in the event that it comes in contact with fluid, thereby protecting the motor from damage and contamination. Hygeia recommends regular filter changes every 12-16 months according to the Hygeia website troubleshooter.
What’s more, the filter can become bogged down during periods of high humidity. If you don’t have a spare filter squirreled away already, now’s a good time to think about buying one for use as a back up to your current in-use filter. Get one and stick it in a sealed zipper bag for safe keeping. Here’s the thing, once the filter self-seals from moisture, it renders the pump useless as anything other than an expensive white noise machine. If you are pump dependent, you could find yourself uncomfortably engorged. In order to prevent a pump-related health crisis consider a little preventative maintenance now, before the weather becomes reminiscent of the conditions in the Rainforest exhibit at the Franklin Park Zoo.
We stock Hygeia replacement parts including the Hygeia bacteriostatic filter and can ship them anywhere in the contiguous US. Link to more info on the breast pump spare parts sold by Lactation Care. Hygeia Bacteriostatic Filter spare pump part in our online store.
Happy summer and happy pumping!