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J Pediatr. 2017 Jun;185:55-61.e4. doi: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2017.02.020. Epub 2017 Apr 3.

Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis: Fussing and Crying Durations and Prevalence of Colic in Infants.

Author information

1
Department of Psychology, University of Warwick, Coventry, United Kingdom; Division of Mental Health and Wellbeing, Warwick Medical School, University of Warwick, Coventry, United Kingdom. Electronic address: D.Wolke@warwick.ac.uk.
2
Department of Psychology, University of Warwick, Coventry, United Kingdom.
3
Department of Psychology, Kingston University London, Kingston upon Thames, London, United Kingdom.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To determine the mean duration of fussing and crying and prevalence of colic using modified Wessel criteria in infants in the first 3 months of life.

STUDY DESIGN:

A systematic literature search was performed using the databases Medline, PsycINFO, and Embase. The major outcome measure was mean total fuss/cry duration during 24 hours at ages 1-2 weeks (11 samples), 3-4 weeks (6 samples), 5-6 weeks (28 samples), 8-9 weeks (9 samples), and 10-12 weeks (12 samples).

RESULTS:

Of 5687 articles reviewed, 28 diary studies (33 samples) were suitable for inclusion in meta-analysis; these studies included 8690 infants. No statistical evidence for a universal crying peak at 6 weeks of age across studies was found. Rather, the mean fuss/cry duration across studies was stable at 117-133 minutes (SDs: 66-70) in the first 6 weeks and dropped to a mean of 68 minutes (SD: 46.2) by 10-12 weeks of age. Colic was much more frequent in the first 6 weeks (17%-25%) compared with 11% by 8-9 weeks of age and 0.6% by 10-12 weeks of age, according to modified Wessel criteria and lowest in Denmark and Japan.

CONCLUSIONS:

The duration of fussing/crying drops significantly after 8-9 weeks of age, with colic as defined by modified Wessel criteria being rare in infants older than 9 weeks. Colic or excessive fuss/cry may be more accurately identified by defining fuss/cry above the 90th percentile in the chart provided based on the review.

KEYWORDS:

colic; country; diary; feeding type; fuss/cry duration; modified-Wessel criteria

PMID:
28385295
DOI:
10.1016/j.jpeds.2017.02.020
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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