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J Pediatr Adolesc Gynecol. 2019 Feb;32(1):78-79. doi: 10.1016/j.jpag.2018.09.005. Epub 2018 Sep 20.

Maternal Placentophagy as a Possible Cause of Breast Budding and Vaginal Bleeding in a Breast-Fed 3-Month-Old Infant.

Author information

1
Division of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas. Electronic address: kathryn.stambough@bcm.edu.
2
Division of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas.
3
Division of Diabetes and Endocrinology, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Placentophagy, or the practice of placental consumption, has grown in popularity over the past decade. Although advocates endorse prevention of postpartum depression, increased breast milk production, reduction in postpartum bleeding, and provision of nutrients postpartum, scientific studies have failed to show benefit. No studies have explored the effect of placental hormone consumption on the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis of the offspring.

CASE:

We present a case of vaginal bleeding and breast budding in a 3-month-old infant whose mother was exclusively breastfeeding. Maternal history was notable for placentophagy. Upon discontinuation of consuming encapsulated placenta, the infant's vaginal bleeding resolved.

SUMMARY AND CONCLUSION:

Our case raises concerns regarding placentophagy and infant endocrine function. More research is needed to assess maternal and infant exogenous estrogen exposure with maternal placental consumption.

KEYWORDS:

Placentophagy; Pre-pubertal breast budding; Pre-pubertal vaginal bleeding

PMID:
30244191
DOI:
10.1016/j.jpag.2018.09.005
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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