Hospitalization, Breast-Milk Feeding, and Growth in Infants With Cleft Palate and Cleft Lip and Palate Born in Denmark


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Abstract

Objective:To evaluate if the duration of postpartum hospitalization, duration of breast-milk feeding, and growth during the first year of life in infants with cleft lip and palate (CLP) and cleft palate (CP) are comparable to infants without facial clefts.Design:Prospective data collection using a registration chart developed by the authors.Setting:Special health care of infants with CLP/CP born in Denmark.Participants:All mature infants with CLP/CP born in 2003 and 2004 were included. Of 165 infants, 115 participated in the study.Intervention:In Denmark, parents of children with CLP/CP receive counseling. This counseling is managed by specially trained health visitors/nurses and is initiated at birth. The counseling seeks to support parents' confidence in having an infant with CLP/CP and to initiate a relationship between the infant and the parents.Main Outcome Measures:Duration of postpartum hospitalization, duration of breast-milk feeding, and weight and length at birth, 5 months of age, and 12 months of age.Results:Hospitalization was 4 days and comparable to that of infants without CLP/CP. The infants with CLP/CP received breast milk but for a shorter period compared with infants without CLP/CP. Weights at birth, 5 months of age, and 12 months of age were identical with Danish growth references.Conclusion:The authors find the results satisfactory and believe that the counseling provided by the health visitors/nurses plays a part in the results.

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