New Study on Synthetic Oxytocin, Type of Birth, and Duration of Exclusive Breastfeeding

This new study from Spain has been published in the journal, Women and Birth.  Researchers looked at the use of synthetic oxytocin and the type of birth in regard to the duration of exclusive breastfeeding, finding that those in the group of planned cesarean birth (without oxytocin administration) had the highest risk of cessation of exclusive breastfeeding at all three intervals studied (1 month, 3 months, 6 months).  

Title:  Cessation of breastfeeding in association with oxytocin administration and type of birth

Authors:  Fernández-Cañadas Morillo A, Durán Duque M, Hernández López AB, Muriel Miguel C, Pérez Riveiro P, Salcedo Mariña A, Royuela Vicente A, Casillas Santana ML, Marín Gabriel MA

Abstract: 
"BACKGROUND: Some studies have suggested an association between synthetic oxytocin administration and type of birth with the initiation and consolidation of breastfeeding."

"AIM: This study aimed to test whether oxytocin administration and type of birth are associated with cessation of exclusive breastfeeding at different periods. A second objective was to investigate whether the administered oxytocin dose is associated with cessation of exclusive breastfeeding."

"METHODS: We conducted a prospective cohort study (n=529) in a tertiary hospital. Only full-term singleton pregnancies were included. Four groups were established based on the type of birth (vaginal or cesarean) and the intrapartum administration of oxytocin. Follow-up was performed to evaluate the consolidation of exclusive breastfeeding at 1, 3 and 6months."

"FINDINGS: During follow-up, the proportion of exclusive breastfeeding decreased in all groups. After adjusting for confounding variables, the group with cesarean birth without oxytocin (planned cesarean birth) had the highest risk of cessation of exclusive breastfeeding (odds ratio [95% confidence interval], 2.51 [1.53-4.12]). No association was found between the oxytocin dose administered during birth and puerperium period and the cessation of exclusive breastfeeding."

"CONCLUSION: Planned cesarean birth without oxytocin is associated with the cessation of exclusive breastfeeding at 1, 3 and 6months of life. It would be desirable to limit elective cesarean births to essentials as well as to give maximum support to encourage breastfeeding in this group of women. The dose of oxytocin given during birth and puerperium period is not associated with cessation of exclusive breastfeeding."

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29754970