Growth Pattern of Exclusively Breast-Fed Preterm Babies

Akhand Tanzih Sultana1, MAK Azad Chowdhury2, Md. Mahbubul Hoque3

Background: Breast milk is uniquely adopted most appropriate natural, preferred
food for all infants including premature newborns. Preterm infants have greater
nutritional need to achieve optimal growth in the neonatal period than any other
time of their life. To achieve this optimal growth of preterm, human milk is the gold
standard nutrient, though there are some reports showing that growth of mixed fed
preterm babies, are better than exclusively breast–fed preterm babies.
Objective: To assess the growth of both exclusive and mixed breast-fed preterm babies.
Methods: A prospective observational study was carried out in the special care baby
unit of Dhaka Shishu Hospital from April 2009- May 2010. Growth pattern of exclusively
breast–fed preterm and mixed fed preterm babies were recorded at 2 and 3 months.
Results: A total 94 preterm babies were enrolled at discharge and followed up. They
were non-randomly selected. Mean weight of exclusively breast–fed preterm and mixed
fed preterm babies respectively were (4676.53±653.45gm vs 4020.00±701.41gm), Length
were (54.78±3.09cm vs52.96±4.50cm) and OFC were (37.84±2.07cm vs 37.09±1.14cm)
at 3 months of age. Growth (weight, length and OFC) of exclusive breast fed preterm
babies were also comparable with the recommended CDC growth chart findings.
Conclusion: Length, weight and OFC were increased significantly in 32-34 weekers
exclusively breast-fed preterm babies in comparison to mixed fed babies.
Key words: Growth, exclusively breast-fed, preterm babies.

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