Effect of Prenatal Lactation Education on Lactation Success in Mothers at Risk of Preterm Delivery
Background:Mothers of preterm infants often produce insufficient amounts of breast milk (BM). Early initiation of BM expression following delivery is associated with increased lactation success, but lack of nursing time delays BM expression in this population.
Purpose:To determine if providing antenatal breast expression education to the support person (SP) of mothers at risk of preterm delivery improves lactation success.
Methods: Twenty women at risk for delivering a preterm infant and their SP were randomized into two groups. Mothers and their SP in Group 1 received education regarding how to use a breast pump and a breast pump was placed into their hospital room. Group 2 received standard care. Data regarding BM volume produced, time to initiation of BM expression and time to onset of lactogenesis stage II was collected.
Results: While there was no difference in time to onset of lactogenesis stage II, mothers in Group 1 initiated BM expression 2.5 hours earlier than those in Group 2. Overall, BM production was higher in Group 1.
Limitations: This study had a relatively small sample size (n=19). Only mothers delivering 31-33 weeks gestation were included. This is a single-center study, which may limit generalizability.
Conclusion: Prenatal lactation education of mothers of preterm infants and their SP is feasible and may increase lactation success.
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