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Breastfeeding initiation and success is impacted by diabetes status of mother
Date:5/19/2014

Women diagnosed with diabetes before or during pregnancy are less likely to initiate and continue breastfeeding their newborns than women without diabetes, a new study suggests. Led by clinician-scientists in The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital and collaborating institutions, the findings point to areas for improved prenatal and postnatal education of women with diabetes.

The study, published in the May issue of the journal Public Health Nutrition, analyzed data from the 2009-2011 Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS), which is administered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Out of nearly 73,000 women included in the sample, 8.8 percent had diabetes during pregnancy, called gestational diabetes, and 1.7 percent had diabetes prior to pregnancy.

"Infants born to women with diabetes during pregnancy are more likely to experience adverse outcomes such as hypoglycemia immediately after delivery. In the longer-term, these children are more likely to be obese and/or develop type 2 diabetes," said Reena Oza-Frank, PhD, RD, principal investigator in the Center for Perinatal Research in The Research Institute. "Breastfeeding can help reduce these risks."

The researchers matched women based on 16 factors, including age, income and ethnicity, to make sure that the differences they saw in breastfeeding initiation and continuation could be attributed to diabetes status. According to the study, women with gestational diabetes and women without diabetes were equally likely to initiate breastfeeding, but gestational diabetes sufferers were less likely to continue for at least two months. Women with pre-pregnancy diabetes were less likely to initiate than both other groups of women, but continued breastfeeding at about the same rate as women with gestational diabetes.

"We found that women with pre-pregnancy diabetes had the lowest breastfeeding initiation and continuation rates. How
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Contact: Gina Bericchia
MediaRelations@NationwideChildrens.org
614-355-0495
Nationwide Children's Hospital
Source:Eurekalert

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