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Development of sucking patterns in preterm infants

Development of sucking patterns in preterm infants

Samenvatting

The studies reported on in this thesis addressed the development of sucking patterns in preterm newborns. Preterm infants often have problems learning to suckle at the breast or to drink from a bottle. It is unclear whether this is due to their preterm birth or whether it is the consequence of neurological damage. From the literature, as well as from daily practice, we know that there is much variation in the time and in the way children start sucking normally. Factors such as birth weight and gestational age may indeed be risk factors but they do not explain the differences in development. A small spot-check proved that most hospitals in the Netherlands start infants on oral feeding by 34 weeks’ post-menstrual age (pma). By and large the policy is aimed at getting the infant to rely on oral feeding entirely as soon as possible. The underlying rationale is to reduce the stay in hospital, and the idea that prolonged tube-feeding delays or even hampers the development of sucking.

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OrganisatieHanzehogeschool Groningen
LectoraatMalnutrition and Healthy Ageing
Datum2010-04-10
TypeProefschrift
TaalEngels

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