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Human milk fat improves growth in premature infants
Date:8/14/2014

his is a natural way to give them fat. Previously, we would add oils or infant formula to help premature babies grow, but we can now use a natural source from donor milk," said Hair.

Hair noted that because the growth was both in weight and length, this growth is likely lean mass, consisting of bone and muscle growth.

"You want to see babies growing in both weight and length," said Hair.

She also noted that the volume of milk given to these infants cannot change to help them grow because their stomach and intestine can only tolerate a certain amount of feedings.

"You cannot give them more volumes of milk. Especially if they have lung problems, they have to have a certain volume of milk. This is a way to add calories but not change the volume of milk," she said.

Since November 2013, the NICU at Texas Children's Hospital has changed its protocol to add this cream supplement to the diet of infants who weigh less than 1,500 grams.

"This also emphasizes the importance of donating excess breast milk that your baby doesn't need to a milk bank. It can help nourish our tiniest and most vulnerable infants," said Hair.

Texas Children's was the first hospital in the world to add human milk-based cream to the diets of very low birth weight infants.

In addition to adding cream to the diets of premature infants, since 2009, Texas Children's has significantly reduced its rates of necrotizing enterocolitis, one of the most devastating and potentially fatal diseases a neonate can face, by implementing a human milk feeding protocol for all infants weighing less than 3.3 pounds.

"Texas Children's strives to be a leader in human milk feeding, because we know it impacts outcomes," said Hair.


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Contact: Dipali Pathak
pathak@bcm.edu
713-798-4710
Baylor College of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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