“Breastfeeding should not be encouraged by doctors to protect against MS relapses, especially among women with MS who have high disease activity and high risk of postpartum relapses,” said study author Emilio Portaccio, MD, of the University of Florence in Italy. “Since it is not considered safe for women to take MS drugs while breastfeeding, breastfeeding may not be feasible for these women who may need to resume treatment to avoid relapses soon after giving birth.”
The study involved 302 pregnancies in 298 women with full-term deliveries who were followed for one year after delivery. A total of 34.4 percent of the women breastfed for at least two months; the remaining 65.6 percent breastfed for less than two months or not at all and were considered not breastfeeding.
In the year after delivery, 37 percent of women experienced one relapse and 6.6 percent had two or more relapses.
The study found breastfeeding did not appear to have a protective effect on relapses in women after adjusting for age at pregnancy, duration of MS, level of disability, relapses in the year before and during pregnancy, drug treatment and exposure to chemicals or smoking. However, breastfeeding did not worsen the relapse rate.
According to Portaccio, the only significant predictors of postpartum relapses were relapses in the year before and during pregnancy.
Women who had relapses in the year before pregnancy were 50 percent more likely to have a relapse after giving birth than those who did not have relapses in the year before pregnancy. Women who had relapses during pregnancy were more than twice as likely to have a relapse in the postpartum period as women who did not have relapses during pregnancy.
“Earlier reported associations between breastfeeding and a lower risk of postpartum relapses may simply reflect different patient behavior, biased by the disease activity. Women who have fewer relapses before and during pregnancy may be more likely to breastfeed and then continue to have fewer relapses in the postpartum period. However, a course of postpartum steroids might protect against later attacks. Approaches of this type were not assessed in this study and might, in consultation with the treating neurologist, enable breastfeeding,” Portaccio said.
The study was supported by the MS Study Group of the Italian Neurological Society, and involved the main 21 Italian MS Centers located throughout the country.
The American Academy of Neurology, an association of more than 24,000 neurologists and neuroscience professionals, is dedicated to promoting the highest quality patient-centered neurologic care. A neurologist is a doctor with specialized training in diagnosing, treating and managing disorders of the brain and nervous system such as Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, migraine, multiple sclerosis, brain injury, Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy.
For more information about the American Academy of Neurology, visit http://www.aan.com.VIDEO: http://www.youtube.com/AANChannel
Rachel L. Seroka | American Academy of Neurology
Diagnoses: When Are Several Opinions Better Than One?
19.07.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung
High in calories and low in nutrients when adolescents share pictures of food online
07.04.2016 | University of Gothenburg
Physicists from the University of Würzburg have designed a light source that emits photon pairs. Two-photon sources are particularly well suited for tap-proof data encryption. The experiment's key ingredients: a semiconductor crystal and some sticky tape.
So-called monolayers are at the heart of the research activities. These "super materials" (as the prestigious science magazine "Nature" puts it) have been...
Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.
This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...
Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion
Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
14.10.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
12.10.2016 | Event News
28.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering
28.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy
28.10.2016 | Life Sciences