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Prolonged and exclusive breastfeeding reduces the risk of infectious diseases in infancy.
Pediatrics 2010; 126(1):e18-25Ped

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To examine the associations of duration of exclusive breastfeeding with infections in the upper respiratory (URTI), lower respiratory (LRTI), and gastrointestinal tracts (GI) in infancy.

METHODS

This study was embedded in the Generation R Study, a population-based prospective cohort study from fetal life onward in the Netherlands. Rates of breastfeeding during the first 6 months (never; partial for <4 months, not thereafter; partial for 4-6 months; exclusive for 4 months, not thereafter; exclusive for 4 months, partial thereafter; and exclusive for 6 months) and doctor-attended infections in the URTI, LRTI, and GI until the age of 12 months were assessed by questionnaires and available for 4164 subjects.

RESULTS

Compared with never-breastfed infants, those who were breastfed exclusively until the age of 4 months and partially thereafter had lower risks of infections in the URTI, LRTI, and GI until the age of 6 months (adjusted odds ratio [aOR]: 0.65 [95% confidence interval (CI): 0.51-0.83]; aOR: 0.50 [CI: 0.32-0.79]; and aOR: 0.41 [CI: 0.26-0.64], respectively) and of LRTI infections between the ages of 7 and 12 months (aOR: 0.46 [CI: 0.31-0.69]). Similar tendencies were observed for infants who were exclusively breastfed for 6 months or longer. Partial breastfeeding, even for 6 months, did not result in significantly lower risks of these infections.

CONCLUSIONS

Exclusive breastfeeding until the age of 4 months and partially thereafter was associated with a significant reduction of respiratory and gastrointestinal morbidity in infants. Our findings support health-policy strategies to promote exclusive breastfeeding for at least 4 months, but preferably 6 months, in industrialized countries.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Generation R Study Group, Rotterdam, Netherlands.No affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Comparative Study
Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

20566605

Citation

Duijts, Liesbeth, et al. "Prolonged and Exclusive Breastfeeding Reduces the Risk of Infectious Diseases in Infancy." Pediatrics, vol. 126, no. 1, 2010, pp. e18-25.
Duijts L, Jaddoe VW, Hofman A, et al. Prolonged and exclusive breastfeeding reduces the risk of infectious diseases in infancy. Pediatrics. 2010;126(1):e18-25.
Duijts, L., Jaddoe, V. W., Hofman, A., & Moll, H. A. (2010). Prolonged and exclusive breastfeeding reduces the risk of infectious diseases in infancy. Pediatrics, 126(1), pp. e18-25. doi:10.1542/peds.2008-3256.
Duijts L, et al. Prolonged and Exclusive Breastfeeding Reduces the Risk of Infectious Diseases in Infancy. Pediatrics. 2010;126(1):e18-25. PubMed PMID: 20566605.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Prolonged and exclusive breastfeeding reduces the risk of infectious diseases in infancy. AU - Duijts,Liesbeth, AU - Jaddoe,Vincent W V, AU - Hofman,Albert, AU - Moll,Henriëtte A, Y1 - 2010/06/21/ PY - 2010/6/23/entrez PY - 2010/6/23/pubmed PY - 2010/7/29/medline SP - e18 EP - 25 JF - Pediatrics JO - Pediatrics VL - 126 IS - 1 N2 - OBJECTIVE: To examine the associations of duration of exclusive breastfeeding with infections in the upper respiratory (URTI), lower respiratory (LRTI), and gastrointestinal tracts (GI) in infancy. METHODS: This study was embedded in the Generation R Study, a population-based prospective cohort study from fetal life onward in the Netherlands. Rates of breastfeeding during the first 6 months (never; partial for <4 months, not thereafter; partial for 4-6 months; exclusive for 4 months, not thereafter; exclusive for 4 months, partial thereafter; and exclusive for 6 months) and doctor-attended infections in the URTI, LRTI, and GI until the age of 12 months were assessed by questionnaires and available for 4164 subjects. RESULTS: Compared with never-breastfed infants, those who were breastfed exclusively until the age of 4 months and partially thereafter had lower risks of infections in the URTI, LRTI, and GI until the age of 6 months (adjusted odds ratio [aOR]: 0.65 [95% confidence interval (CI): 0.51-0.83]; aOR: 0.50 [CI: 0.32-0.79]; and aOR: 0.41 [CI: 0.26-0.64], respectively) and of LRTI infections between the ages of 7 and 12 months (aOR: 0.46 [CI: 0.31-0.69]). Similar tendencies were observed for infants who were exclusively breastfed for 6 months or longer. Partial breastfeeding, even for 6 months, did not result in significantly lower risks of these infections. CONCLUSIONS: Exclusive breastfeeding until the age of 4 months and partially thereafter was associated with a significant reduction of respiratory and gastrointestinal morbidity in infants. Our findings support health-policy strategies to promote exclusive breastfeeding for at least 4 months, but preferably 6 months, in industrialized countries. SN - 1098-4275 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/20566605/Prolonged_and_exclusive_breastfeeding_reduces_the_risk_of_infectious_diseases_in_infancy_ L2 - http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/pmidlookup?view=long&amp;pmid=20566605 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -