Effect of antenatal breastfeeding counselling done in-hospital prior to delivery on breast feeding outcomes amongst mothers admitted at a tertiary care hospital in middle India

Sharja Phuljhele, Santosh Kumar Rathia, Ankita Chandrakar


Introduction: Antenatal counseling and postnatal support aided early initiation and exclusive breastfeeding ensure optimum childhood nutrition and reduced morbidity/mortality. Objective: To evaluate the effect of immediate antenatal counselling on breastfeeding outcomes in terms of early initiation and establishment. Methods: This study was conducted over one-year period including pregnant women with term gestation admitted for anticipated delivery and excluding mothers delivering baby with orofacial or multiple anomalies or babies who required hospitalization within 24 hours. All expectant mothers (irrespective of prior antenatal counseling status) were counseled before delivery after hospitalization. Controls were those who could not be counseled before delivery due to reasons like emergency delivery/LSCS. Sample size- taking power of 80% with 95% C.I., we required 1884 subjects. Data collected on Microsoft Excel sheet was analysed using SSPS software. Results: Out of 1884 mothers enrolled irrespective of prior antenatal breastfeeding counseling, 1328 cases (70.4%) were counseled prior to delivery and rest 556(29.6%) could not be counseled (considered as control). Among freshly counseled mothers, 65.5% initiated early (within 1hr after NVD or within 4hours of LSCS) and 89% established adequate breastfeeding within 24 hours compared to 46% early initiation (EI) and 54% early establishment (EE) in non-counseled group. Mean hours taken foradequately established breastfeeding was also lower in subjects who received immediate counseling prior to delivery. Conclusion: Antenatal breastfeeding counseling including that done in-hospital prior to deliveryhelps in early initiation and establishment of breastfeeding.

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