Current management of transitional feeding issues in preterm neonates born in Queensland, Australia

Dodrill, Pamela, McMahon, Sandra, Donovan, Timothy and Cleghorn, Geoffrey (2008) Current management of transitional feeding issues in preterm neonates born in Queensland, Australia. Early Human Development, 84 10: 637-643. doi:10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2008.04.004

Author Dodrill, Pamela
McMahon, Sandra
Donovan, Timothy
Cleghorn, Geoffrey
Title Current management of transitional feeding issues in preterm neonates born in Queensland, Australia
Journal name Early Human Development   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0378-3782
Publication date 2008-10-01
Year available 2008
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2008.04.004
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 84
Issue 10
Start page 637
End page 643
Total pages 7
Editor E. F. Maalouf
Place of publication Dublin, Ireland
Publisher Elsevier Ireland
Language eng
Subject C1
111403 Paediatrics
920201 Allied Health Therapies (excl. Mental Health Services)
Abstract Background: Many preterm neonates display difficulty establishing suck-feeding competence in the weeks following birth. Ineffective management of transitional feeding issues may cause patient complications, and can contribute to increased length of stay. Aims: Given that many neonatal nurseries appear to vary in their neonatal feeding management practices, the aim of this study was to investigate and document the routine level of support and intervention currently provided for preterm neonates with transitional feeding issues across the various level II (special care) nurseries (SCNs) in Queensland, Australia. Methods: A questionnaire was mailed to all Queensland SCNs in 2005 (n = 36). The questionnaire contained a series of closed-choice and short-answer questions designed to obtain information from each SCN regarding their current practices for managing transitional feeding issues in preterm neonates. Results were confirmed during a follow-up phone call. Results: Responses were obtained from 29 SCNs (80.6%). None of these nurseries reported having any formal, written policies regarding the management of transitional feeding issues in preterm neonates. Wide variations were reported in relation to the suck-feeding assessments and interventions used by staff within the various SCNs. Of the 29 nurseries, 4 (13.8%) reported using checklists or assessments to judge readiness for suck-feeds, and 5 (17.2%) reported using pulse oximetry to judge tolerance of suck-feeding attempts. Eighteen SCNs (62.1%) reported offering some form of active intervention to assist neonates with transitional feeding issues, with the most common intervention techniques reported being non-nutritive sucking during tube feeds, pre-feeding oral stimulation, and actively pacing suck-feeds. Twenty-two SCNs (75.4%) reported having access to a lactation consultant to assist mothers with breastfeeding issues. Conclusions: Differences were reported in the routine management of transitional feeding issues in preterm neonates across the various SCNs in Queensland. It is suggested that evidence based guidelines need to be developed, and that, in order to do this, further research studies are required to determine current best practice, as well as to answer remaining questions.
Keyword Preterm
Infant feeding
Management practices
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: 2009 Higher Education Research Data Collection
Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) - Collection
School of Medicine Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 12 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Tue, 31 Mar 2009, 20:00:19 EST by Lisa Hennell on behalf of Paediatrics & Child Health - RBWH