Collections > Scholarly Posters and Presentations > Does Kangaroo Mother Care have an impact on breastfeeding or oral feeding readiness measures in preterm infants?

Research Question: In preterm infants, how does Kangaroo Mother Care, or skin-to-skin contact, influence breastfeeding or oral feeding readiness? Background: Kangaroo Mother Care (KMC) was first established in Bogotá, Columbia by Doctors Rey and Martinez (Rey & Martinez, 1983). In KMC positioning, an infant wearing only a diaper and hat, when appropriate, is placed in between the mothers’ breasts in an upright position, creating skin-to-skin contact (SSC) between the mother and infant. Rey and Martinez (1983) promote early implementation of KMC in a continuous and prolonged manner where possible. KMC has been proven to be a cost-effective alternative to traditional incubation, and is easy to administer (Broughton et al., 2013; Sharma et al., 2016). There is also research to support the efficacy of KMC for many outcomes, including reduction in risk of mortality, infection, and sepsis in preterm infants (Conde-Agudelo, 2016). KMC has also been shown to significantly improve thermoregulation abilities and shorten hospital stays (Charpak et al., 1997). There is an increasing body of research on feeding measures regarding KMC’s impact on feeding readiness in preterm infants. We conducted our study in order to gain a comprehensive view of the literature pertaining to this topic. Methods: A systematic search was performed on three databases: PubMed, CINAHL, and ProQuest. Researchers did not time-limit the search. The following search terms were used: skin to skin, kangaroo care, kangaroo mother care, SSC, preterm, premature, infant, baby, babies, neonate, breastfeeding, and oral feeding. Studies were included if the population consisted of preterm infants, KMC or SSC was the primary intervention, breastfeeding or oral feeding was a primary or major secondary outcome, and if the studies were experimental, original in nature, and published in a peer-reviewed journal. The abstracts of the articles were reviewed, and articles were excluded if they were not in English or were case studies or non-experimental. Of the 616 articles identified in the search, 13 articles met the full inclusion criteria and were included in the review. Anticipated Results: The systematic review consists of 7 randomized control trials, 1 cross-sectional study, 3 longitudinal studies, and 2 cohort studies. Quality appraisal and data extraction are in progress. Discussion KMC cannot be proven to be beneficial, but is assuredly not harmful for preterm infants. Furthermore, the fact that KMC is cost effective, easy to implement, and has other positive outcomes suggests it could be a good intervention to use for preterm infants that are medically stable, particularly those in more rural or under-sourced areas. Future research should adhere to more consistent definitions of KMC, breastfeeding outcomes, preterm infants, and any other primary outcomes or measures in order to make a more confident claim about the efficacy of KMC as an intervention for feeding outcomes.