Should jaundiced infants be breastfed?
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No studies have demonstrated that cessation of breastfeeding in jaundiced infants improves clinical outcomes, although this has only been studied in term infants. Temporarily disrupting or supplementing breastfeeding in jaundiced infants is associated with premature cessation of breastfeeding (strength of recommendation [SOR]: B, based on a nonrandomized, nonblinded trial). Jaundiced breastfed term infants have no significant difference in length of phototherapy, and no increased rate of exchange transfusion or kernicterus compared with jaundiced bottle-fed term infants (SOR: B, based on a low-quality randomized controlled trial and a prospective cohort study). In light of the association of breastfeeding with improved health outcomes,mothers of jaundiced term infants should be encouraged to continue breastfeed.
Journal of Family Practice, 52(11) 2003: 895-896.