Document Detail

Protective effect of exclusive breastfeeding against infections during infancy: a prospective study.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20876557     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
OBJECTIVE: To prospectively investigate the effects of breastfeeding on the frequency and severity of infections in a well-defined infant population with adequate vaccination coverage and healthcare standards.
STUDY DESIGN: In a representative sample of 926 infants, successfully followed up for 12 months, feeding mode and all infectious episodes, including acute otitis media (AOM), acute respiratory infection (ARI), gastroenteritis, urinary tract infection, conjunctivitis and thrush, were recorded at 1, 3, 6, 9 and 12 months of life.
RESULTS: Infants exclusively breastfed for 6 months, as per WHO recommendations, presented with fewer infectious episodes than their partially breastfed or non-breastfed peers and this protective effect persisted after adjustment for potential confounders for ARI (OR 0.58, 95% CI 0.36 to 0.92), AOM (OR 0.37, 95% CI 0.13 to 1.05) and thrush (OR 0.14, 95% CI 0.02 to 1.02). Prolonged exclusive breastfeeding was associated with fewer infectious episodes (r(s)=-0.07, p=0.019) and fewer admissions to hospital for infection (r(s)=-0.06, p=0.037) in the first year of life. Partial breastfeeding was not related to protective effect. Several confounding factors, including parental age and education, ethnicity, presence of other siblings, environmental tobacco smoke exposure and season of birth were demonstrated to have an effect on frequency of infections during infancy.
CONCLUSIONS: Findings from this large-scale prospective study in a well-defined infant population with adequate healthcare standards suggest that exclusive breastfeeding contributes to protection against common infections during infancy regarding and lessens the frequency and severity of infectious episodes. Partial breastfeeding did not seem to provide this protective effect.
Fani Ladomenou; Joanna Moschandreas; Anthony Kafatos; Yiannis Tselentis; Emmanouil Galanakis
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article     Date:  2010-09-27
Journal Detail:
Title:  Archives of disease in childhood     Volume:  95     ISSN:  1468-2044     ISO Abbreviation:  Arch. Dis. Child.     Publication Date:  2010 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-11-26     Completed Date:  2010-12-28     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0372434     Medline TA:  Arch Dis Child     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  1004-8     Citation Subset:  AIM; IM    
Department of Paediatrics, University of Crete, POB 2208, Heraklion 710 03, Greece.
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MeSH Terms
Breast Feeding / statistics & numerical data*
Candidiasis, Oral / epidemiology,  prevention & control
Conjunctivitis / epidemiology,  prevention & control
Follow-Up Studies
Gastroenteritis / epidemiology,  prevention & control
Greece / epidemiology
Hospitalization / statistics & numerical data
Infant, Newborn
Infection Control / methods*
Otitis Media / epidemiology,  prevention & control
Prospective Studies
Respiratory Tract Infections / epidemiology,  prevention & control
Urinary Tract Infections / epidemiology,  prevention & control

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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