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Breastfeed Med. 2013 Feb;8(1):58-67. doi: 10.1089/bfm.2012.0012. Epub 2012 Jul 23.

Breastfeeding among high-risk inner-city African-American mothers: a risky choice?

Author information

1
Division of General Academic Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital,Cleveland, Ohio 44106, USA. Lydia.Furman@uhhospitals.org

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This study identified barriers to breastfeeding among high-risk inner-city African-American mothers.

SUBJECTS AND METHODS:

We used audiotaped focus groups moderated by an experienced International Board Certified Lactation Consultant, with recruitment supported by the community partner MomsFirst™ (Cleveland Department of Public Health, Cleveland, OH). Institutional Review Board approval and written informed consent were obtained. Notes-based analysis was conducted with use of a prior analytic structure called Factors Influencing Beliefs (FIBs), redefined with inclusion/exclusion criteria to address breastfeeding issues.

RESULTS:

Three focus groups included 20 high-risk inner-city expectant and delivered mothers. Relevant FIBs domains were as follows: Risk Appraisal, Self Perception, Relationship Issues/Social Support, and Structural/Environmental Factors. Risk Appraisal themes included awareness of benefits, fear of pain, misconceptions, and lack of information. Self Perception themes included low self-efficacy with fear of social isolation and limited expression of positive self-esteem. Relationship Issues/Social Support themes included formula as a cultural norm, worries about breastfeeding in public, and challenging family relationships. Structural/Environmental Factors themes included negative postpartum hospital experiences and lack of support after going home.

CONCLUSIONS:

Several findings have been previously reported, such as fear of pain with breastfeeding, but we identified new themes, including self-esteem and self-efficacy, and new concerns, for example, that large breasts would suffocate a breastfeeding infant. The FIBs analytic framework, as modified for breastfeeding issues, creates a context for future analysis and comparison of related studies and may be a useful tool to improve understanding of barriers to breastfeeding among high-risk inner-city women.

PMID:
22823328
DOI:
10.1089/bfm.2012.0012
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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