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Early Hum Dev. 1984 Apr;9(3):283-90.

Breastfeeding and eczema.


198 infants were followed up from birth until 4 1/2-5 years to observe the development of eczema and asthma and its relation to infant feeding. Findings here refer only to eczema. Comparison between those initially breastfed, regardless of duration, and those fed on cows milk preparations showed little difference in the incidence of eczema, but there was a higher incidence of eczema in those with an immediate family history of atopy than in those with no such history. Comparison of infants breastfed for less than and more than 12 weeks showed: the incidence of eczema fell in infants with an immediate family history of atopy when exclusive breastfeeding was continued beyond 12 weeks, whereas the incidence of eczema rose in all breastfed infants, regardless of their atopic family history, when breastfeeding, combined with other foods, was continued beyond 12 weeks.

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