Dr. Ruth Lawrence, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Rochester who authored the breast-feeding section in one of the praised texts, said she and others have been trying for a number of years to increase the number of physicians who are well-informed about breast-feeding.
"Everybody knows that breast-feeding is good," she said. "But not everybody knows how to help mother succeed."
The federal government's Healthy People 2010 goals and a policy statement from the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend exclusive breast-feeding for the first six months, Ogburn said. Healthy People 2010 has set a goal for 50 percent of mothers to be nursing when their infants are six months old, compared with the 29 percent reported in 1998.
The benefits of breast-feeding for the child range from fewer upper respiratory infections to better bonding and lower rates of diabetes, Ogburn noted. And the American Academy of Pediatrics says that benefits to the mother include an earlier return to pre-pregnancy weight and a decreased risk of breast and ovarian cancer.
Find out more about breast-feeding at the American Academy of Pediatrics.
SOURCES: Adam Aponte, M.D., medical director, North General Diagnostic and Treatment Center, and chair of pediatrics and ambulatory Care, North General Hospital, New York, N.Y.; Ruth Lawrence, M.D., professor, pediatrics, University of Rochester School of Medicine, Rochester, N.Y.; Tony Ogburn, M.D., associate professor and residency program director, department of obstetrics and gynecology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque; presentation, May 5, 2008, American College o
All rights reserved