Navigation Links
How critically ill infants can benefit most from human milk

Human milk is infant food, but for sick, hospitalized babies, it's also medicine. That's the central premise of a series of articles in a neonatal nursing journal's special issue focused on human milk for sick newborns. The articles are being published during World Breastfeeding Week, Aug. 1-7, 2014.

Multiple public health and professional medical associations from the World Health Organization to the American Academy of Pediatrics have endorsed the widespread advantages of human milk and breastfeeding for all infants. A new issue of Advances in Neonatal Care is devoted to best practices in providing human milk to hospitalized infants.

"The immunological and anti-inflammatory properties of human milk are especially important for the critically ill infants in our intensive care units," said Diane L. Spatz, Ph.D., R.N.-B.C., FAAN, nurse researcher and director of the Lactation Program at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), and the invited guest editor of the August 2014 issue of the journal, published by the National Association of Neonatal Nurses.

An internationally prominent lactation expert, Spatz leads a robust breastfeeding and Lactation Program at CHOP. CHOP is already on the cutting edge of human milk science and lactation services with a state-of-the-art Human Milk Management Center, and round-the-clock support from nurses and international board-certified lactation consultants, as well as wide-spread institutional support. At CHOP, more than four out of five infants discharged from the Hospital's intensive care units are receiving human milk.

The Hospital has used donor human milk since 2006 for at-risk infants to supplement a mother's own milk supply if it is insufficient or if the mother is unable to provide milk for her infant. This week, CHOP announced plans to launch a non-profit milk bank with the Human Milk Banking Association of North America within a year, an onsite resource not commonly offered within a U.S. children's hospital.

In the special issue, Spatz and her colleagues from CHOP and other institutions cover a variety of topics on the provision of human milk in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), including original research articles, ethical rationales for the provision of human milk, and evidence-based methods for implementing particular programs.

  • "Characteristics of the NICU Work Environment Associated with Breastfeeding Support," original research led by Sunny G. Hallowell, Ph.D., PPCNP-BC, IBCLC, of the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing, analyzes data from a 2008 survey of 6,060 registered nurses in 104 NICUs. This large national sample found that overall, NICU nurses provided breastfeeding support to about 1 in 7 mothers, around the clock. Infants and mothers were more likely to receive this support in units with adequate nurse staffing. Low-birthweight infants were significantly more likely to be discharged on human milk when NICUs were staffed by nurses with B.S.N. degrees.

  • "An Ethical Case for the Provision of Human Milk in the NICU," by Elizabeth B. Froh, Ph.D., R.N., clinical supervisor of CHOP's Lactation Team and the Human Milk Management Center, and Spatz, argues that under the "best interest principle" the infant's best interest, not parental authority, should have priority in guiding infant feeding practices, particularly for critically ill babies in the NICU. The well-documented health benefits of human milk, say the authors, make it the optimal form of nutrition for those infants.

  • "Implementation of a Human Milk Management Center," by Spatz and colleagues describes the CHOP experience in developing its Human Milk Management Center. This centralized facility optimizes the provision of human milk for the most vulnerable infants, allowing staff to analyze human milk, fortifying milk under clean conditions, and making skim milk for infants with conditions requiring it. The authors also discuss logistical considerations, staff training requirements for milk technicians, best safety practices and other organizational processes.

Additional articles in the issue examine these topics:

  • An integrative review of breast pumping support needed by mothers of NICU infants
  • Congenital hyperinsulinism: exclusive human milk and breastfeeding
  • Implementing a breastfeeding peer support group in a children's hospital
  • Considerations in meeting protein needs of the human milk-fed preterm infant
  • Environmental factors affecting breastfeeding duration within a NICU

"Supporting the use of human milk is one of the most effective evidence-based strategies to ensure an infant's safe journey through the NICU and promote optimal health and developmental outcomes for these children," added Spatz. "This special edition provides clinicians with tools in order to transform human milk and breastfeeding practices in their own institutions."


Contact: Alison Fraser
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

Related medicine news :

1. Antidepressant use associated with increased mortality among critically ill patients?
2. New technique helps determine degree of muscle wasting in critically ill patients
3. Omega XL Reports New Independent Study:Omega-3s Help Heal Bedsores In Critically Ill
4. Doctors choice of words may influence familys decision to permit CPR in critically ill
5. Study finds that radiation oncology research is critically underfunded by NIH
6. Critically ill patients to benefit from lung probe
7. Depressed moms behavior may play role in infants sleep problems
8. Research shows efficacy of treatment model developed at Women & Infants
9. Low-Income Mothers May Overfeed Their Infants
10. Gut flora affects maturation of B cells in infants
11. Phthalates in PVC floors taken up by the body in infants
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
How critically ill infants can benefit most from human milk
(Date:11/25/2015)... Chicago, IL (PRWEB) , ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... the assets of Tri Lite’s personal heating products business. Cozy Products explains ... low-wattage personal heaters that fit in well with the Cozy Products business model: to ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... Brillianteen, McGaw YMCA’s ... learning in its 65th Anniversary Brillianteen Revue, scheduled for March 4-6, 2016. Auditions ... 65 years, Brillianteen has been a treasured tradition for numerous families in the ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... scholarships for people struggling with eating disorders as a result of the $20,000 ... annual event, held at Fox Run Golf Club in Eureka, will help individuals ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... An ... is resulting in a way for homeless people to have a more dignified ... a new initiative whereby they are repurposing plastic bags into sleeping mats for ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... , ... Students and parents have something to be thankful for this Thanksgiving ... awards. California Casualty is proud to support the contest designed to utilize ... driving, the number one killer of young drivers. , Almost 1,000 entries of ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)... , Nov. 25, 2015 Research and Markets ... "Membranes Market - Global Forecast to 2020" ... , accounting for 37.21% of the total market ... Asia-Pacific region is projected to growth at ... has been attributed primarily to the fast growing water, ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... SHANGHAI , Nov. 25, 2015 WuXi ... WX ), a leading open-access R&D capability and technology ... industries with operations in China ... announced that at an extraordinary general meeting of shareholders ... the proposal to authorize and approve the previously announced ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... Nov. 24, 2015  In the pharmaceutical industry, companies ... effort to quickly uncover new insights, tactics and strategies ... --> --> However, organizations often find ... project and ensure that all rules and regulations are ... Another major barrier to efficiently launching market research projects ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: