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May 19, 2011

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Home » Metro » Education

Breast masseurs stir up fuss

A HOUSEHOLD services company training men to offer nursing mothers breast massages to boost their milk secretion has stirred up a big controversy among Shanghai residents.

Xia Jun, CEO of the household service company, told Shanghai Daily he has spent the past three months taking classes to receive official qualification as a breast massage tutor. He said he was issued a certificate from the China Employment Training Technical Instruction Center.

Xia said he now will train his employees, both female and male, to massage the breasts of nursing mothers in a "scientific way."

He said he would help his employees get official qualifications from the center as professional breast masseurs and masseuses.

Doctors at major hospitals in the city, however, said the service is not necessary.

A doctor surnamed Hou with Shanghai No. 1 Maternity and Children's Health Hospital told Shanghai Daily that young mothers can boost their milk supply themselves simply by breast feeding their babies at certain frequency.

Meanwhile, Xia said many breast masseuses work without any qualifications and that more women are interested in breast feeding in the wake of baby formula scandals in which banned substances such as melamine sickened hundreds of thousands of infants.

Many residents said they don't think new moms, or their husbands, would allow a strange man to massage their breasts when they can hire a woman.

"It's unbelievable. What kind of husband would allow another man to massage his wife's breasts?" asked 24-year-old resident Xu Boshi. "I'd rather study the skills and do it myself."

Other expressed doubt about the "professional and scientific skills." The training course only takes 10 to 18 days.

Xia said the future of male breast masseurs depends on society's tolerance, but compared it to male gynecologists and obstetricians.

The service costs 300 yuan (US$46) to 500 yuan an hour.


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