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J Clin Nurs. 2011 Sep;20(17-18):2509-18. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2702.2011.03767.x.

Breastfeeding: validation of a reduced Breastfeeding Assessment Score in a group of Italian women.

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1
Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Monza Brianza, Italy. virna.zobbi@unimi.it

Abstract

AIM AND OBJECTIVE:

To assess the accuracy of a reduced Breastfeeding Assessment Score in a group of Italian women; the reduced Breastfeeding Assessment Score considers only five of the eight original Breastfeeding Assessment Score items studied, those not indicating a pathology.

BACKGROUND:

The World Health Organization recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months of life because of its many benefits. A prognostic approach that identifies mothers at increased risk of early breastfeeding cessation is needed to provide preventive support. The Breastfeeding Assessment Score is useful to this approach.

DESIGN:

This is a descriptive, prospective study. This study involves two Italian hospitals.

METHOD:

We included healthy Italian mothers who gave birth from 7 July 2008-15 January 2009. The exclusion criteria on the convenience sample were: non-Italian nationality, birth under 36 weeks and twin birth. The authors calculated a reduced Breastfeeding Assessment Score ('reduced' because the original eight items studied by Hall, were reduced to five) 48 hours after birth. After 4 weeks a structured follow-up telephone interview was carried out: the primary outcome was breastfeeding cessation.

RESULTS:

We recruited 386 women, with six lost during follow-up. Out of 380 women, 127 (33·4%) stopped breastfeeding. With a cut off point of 8, the reduced Breastfeeding Assessment Score sensitivity was 52·0%, which increased to 77·9% by using a cut-off point of 9. We also calculated a modified Breastfeeding Assessment Score with different age categories, which is adequate based on the Italian situation: in this case sensitivity was 70·1%. This study suggests that a reduced Breastfeeding Assessment Score with a different cut-off point or modified with a different age classification is useful in identifying Italian mothers who will discontinue breastfeeding, as in both cases sensitivity does increase.

RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE:

Italian midwives could use this modified Breastfeeding Assessment Score to identify mothers at increased risk of early breastfeeding cessation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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