Facilitating Colostrum Collection by Hospitalized Women in the Early Postpartum Period for Infant Trophic Feeding and Oral Immune Therapy

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Abstract

Administration of colostrum for early trophic feedings and colostrum oral immune therapy for neonates in the NICU is essential to enhance gut maturation and lower risk of infections. However, it is often difficult for women to collect early colostrum because of its thick viscosity and low volume. Women may be unable to sit upright during pumping sessions because of postsurgical pain, acute or chronic illness, or birth complications and may need assistance. In this article, we describe specific techniques that providers can use to help women to collect colostrum when they are unable to accomplish collection on their own. Helping women collect and administer colostrum to their neonates in the NICU may engage and motivate them to continue to pump and provide breast milk for their hospitalized neonates.

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