Origins: Medela Breast Pumps
If you are looking to select the perfect pump for yourself, look no further. Medela is undoubtedly the one of the leading brands in the market. Established more than 50 years ago as a small family owned business in Switzerland, it has grown into an international brand.
Given its extensive range of products, its no surprise that that at least one of the pumps can fit the needs of most mothers. Equally important, their pumps and replacement accessories are easily available online and in stores.
What is Medela’s 2 Phase Technology?
The Medela range often mentions its 2-phase technology, which is the suction technology modelled after a baby’s sucking pattern. This technology differentiates this brand from the rest of the pumps on the market, as you can switch to this mode by just pressing a button (If you are wondering, this mode is designed to induce a letdown which allows you to collect more milk) . However, not all of their pumps possess this feature, for example, the Mini Electric Single and Double do not have it.
Phase 1: 2 minute Simulation Phase, where the pump suction moves rapidly, mimicking an infant sucking to stimulate the mother’s milk ejection reflex. This will usually cause the mother to have a ‘letdown’ or a rapid ejection or flow of milk.
Phase 2: Expression Phase, this phase features a longer deeper suction, which is similar to an infant drawing a mouthful of milk.
What you should know
If you are considering getting a Medela Pump, do note that their range of products available differ depending on the country you are in, for example, certain models are not available in the US.
Also, when purchasing pumps, make sure you are familiar with the warranty period, where to get the accessories, as well as finding out who to contact if you are having any trouble with it. The last thing you need is to be engorged and in pain with a malfunctioning pump and no service agents around.
Although Medela US has a more limited range of pumps, online reviews usually rave about their excellent customer service. In addition, the prices of Medela US pumps, are amongst the most affordable in the market. Check also with your insurance providers if they are able to cover your cost However, if you are not situated in the US, you should check with your local service agents about warranty periods and servicing costs for a US Set. Servicing a US Set might cost more than servicing a local set, even if both are no longer under warranty.
The Medela Range
Click on the individual links to read the detailed breast pump reviews.
Double Electric Breast Pumps
- Medela Pump in Style Advanced PISA
- Medela Freestyle
- Medela Swing Maxi
- Medela Mini Electric Double Pump
- Medela Hospital Grade Pumps : The Symphony and Lactina
Point to note : All Medela double electric pumps can be used as a single electric pump. This is useful on those days where you have to multitask, for e.g. baby latches on one side while you pump on the other.
Single Electric Breast Pumps
Manual Breast Pump
Medela Product Selector
The Medela US website also has a useful ‘Product Selector quiz’ which recommends which pumps are most suitable for you depending on your usage patterns, and lifestyle needs.
Breastshields are the funnel like component which you place on your breast. Most of the pumps come with the standard 24 mm Breastshields, but you can purchase the smaller or bigger sized personalfit ones.
The 24 mm breastshields are catered to the woman with average sized nipples.
However, you should refer to Medela’s guidelines on getting the right sized BreastShield to determine if the average sized one is suitable for you.
If you suspect that the 24mm breastshields are too small or big for you, you should consider purchasing the Personal Fit Breastshields which come in the following sizes:
- S (21 mm)
- M (24 mm)
- L (27 mm)
- XL (30 mm)
- XXL (36 mm)
Medela also manufactures soft rubber breastshields called ‘Comfort or Soft Fit Breastshields’ which can be useful on days that you get engorged and need more comfortable relief. Although a plus in terms of comfort, the comfort Breastshields only comes in one size (24 mm) and needs to be replaced more often as its not as durable as the plastic ones.
Most Medela Sets come with the Cooler Bag. This is useful for days where you pump outside the home and don’t have access to a refrigerator. The cooling component can be frozen or cooled and can keep breast milk cool for up to 12 hours depending on the external temperature around it.
Also included in your set are 4 -150ml storage bottles which can be attached to all Medela Pumps. These bottles can be used to freeze breastmilk although Breastmilk bags are probably a better solution to maximize space in the freezer.
Pump & Save Bags
Medela has come up with an innovative solution to breastmilk bags. Instead of pumping into a bottle and later transferring it into a bag, ( saving the extra effort of washing additional bottles), you can now pump directly into the bag. The Medela Pump & Save Bags has a tape which you can hook onto the medela breastshield, letting the milk to flow into the bag.
If you are confused and do not know where to begin , Start here.
You can refer to our Breastpump Comparison Table for a comparison of the Medela Pumps.
You might also want to read more about the Medela Pump In Style Advance (PISA), one of the more popular Medela models.
Watch this informational video by Medela – Breastmilk : Every drop Counts.