Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Lactation program increases rate of breast feeding

24.03.2004


A lactation program targeting mothers of very low birth weight babies (VLBWB) can be successful in raising the rate of breast-feeding among this group



Mother’s milk is well documented to be the optimal source of nutrition for newborn babies; however, mothers of very low birth weight (VLBW) babies (those who weigh less than 1500 grams -- approximately 3.3 pounds) are among the least likely groups to initiate and sustain lactation.

Now, a study published in the Journal of Obstetrics, Gynecologic and Neonatal Nursing shows that a lactation program targeting mothers of very low birth weight babies (VLBWB) can be successful in raising the rate of breast-feeding among this group.


The Mother’s Milk Club at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago is a lactation program that helps mothers whose children are cared for in the Rush neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). All mothers have access to the support and educational components in the program, and special services have been implemented to address the unique needs of low-income women with VLBW infants. Additionally, the women are invited to return to weekly luncheon meetings for continued lactation assistance after they are discharged from the hospital.

Very little data exists on the breast-feeding rates of women with VLBW infants. Most studies do not distinguish these women from mothers of low birth weight babies (those who are less than 2500 grams -- approximately 5.5 lbs). According to the study’s lead investigator, Paula Meier, DNSc, director for Clinical Research and Lactation at Rush University Medical Center, VLBW infants are born disproportionately to low income or African American women. Both groups are much less likely to breast feed than Caucasian mothers or those with higher incomes.

The goal of the study was to examine the effectiveness of the Rush Mother’s Milk Club by comparing it with the target goal of 75 percent of all new mothers breastfeeding as set by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Healthy People 2010 report.

Meier analyzed records of 207 VLBW infants and their mothers. Following birth, the infants spent time in the Rush Neonatal Intensive Care Unit during a 24-month period between 1997 and 1998. Of these 207 women, 44. 9 percent were African American; 35.7 percent were Caucasian; 17.9 percent were Latina; and 1.4 percent were Asian American. Of these eligible mothers, 151 or 73 percent initiated breast-feeding in the NICU.

Meier’s report shows the Rush Mother’s Milk Club produced higher rates of breast- feeding than the national average, which includes mothers of healthy babies who do not have risk factors for establishing and maintaining lactation. National data from 1998 showed that only 64 percent of all mothers breast-fed immediately after giving birth.

"I think this study shows that if you design a program that seeks to educate new mothers of very low birth weight babies about the importance of their milk in helping with optimal growth and health, you can show success with initiating and sustaining lactation," Meier said. She pointed out that programs targeting an inner city population of mothers with VLBW infants must take into account other factors that might prohibit them from providing milk for their VLBW infants.

"Our program, for instance, uses a taxi service that allows women without cars to come to the hospital to participate in the Friday luncheons," she said. Additionally, Meier has recruited and trained five breast-feeding peer counselors to help the new mothers with breast-feeding. All five had infants in the Rush NICU and participated in a five-day certification course offered by La Leche League.

"Mother’s milk is protective against many costly and handicapping conditions for these vulnerable babies, potentially saving hundreds of thousands of dollars in hospital costs for just pennies a day," said Meier. "For example, our rate for necrotizing enterocolitis (an inflammation of the bowels) is only 4% in babies under 1000g, (approximately 2.2 pounds) which is markedly lower than that for the US in general (10-12%). We attribute this to the fact that nearly 100% of our babies in this weight group receive their mothers’ milk," said Meier.

Meier pointed out that the average case of necrotizing enterocolitis costs $74,000 to treat and adds 22 days to the hospital stay, jeopardizing the health of the infant and creating unnecessary trauma among new parents.

Chris Martin | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.rush.edu/

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht The importance of biodiversity in forests could increase due to climate change
17.11.2017 | Deutsches Zentrum für integrative Biodiversitätsforschung (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig

nachricht Win-win strategies for climate and food security
02.10.2017 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

Im Focus: Wrinkles give heat a jolt in pillared graphene

Rice University researchers test 3-D carbon nanostructures' thermal transport abilities

Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA detects solar flare pulses at Sun and Earth

17.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

NIST scientists discover how to switch liver cancer cell growth from 2-D to 3-D structures

17.11.2017 | Health and Medicine

The importance of biodiversity in forests could increase due to climate change

17.11.2017 | Studies and Analyses

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>