Comparison of the health status of exclusively breastfeeding infants and newborns receiving sugar water along with breast milk
OBJECTIVE: To compare newborns fed exclusively on human milk with those fed sugar water along with the mother's milk.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Cross-sectional study conducted on selected newborns through sampling available at the clinic and neonatal ward and the emergency department of Ghaem Hospital in Mashhad, Iran, during 2014-2018. The data collection tool was a questionnaire developed by researchers that included laboratory data, maternal information, and neonatal characteristics. The data was analyzed with t for Student and c2.
RESULTS: Of 445 neonates, 324 (72.8%) were exclusively breastfed, and 121 (27.2%) were fed breast milk along with sugar water. A significant difference was found between the two groups in terms of maternal age (p = 0.001), breastfeeding frequency (p = 0.002), feeding duration (p = 0.013), urination frequency (p = 0.001), weight on admission (p = 0.001), daily weight loss (p = 0.001), daily weight loss percentage (p = 0.001), and serum levels of sodium (p = 0.001), potassium (p = 0.019), urea (p = 0.001), creatinine (p = 0.001), and platelet (p = 0.001). Moreover, lethargy, irritability, mucosal dryness, hyperthermia, apnea, loss of consciousness, mother’s breast problems, and inappropriate breastfeeding position were more common in newborns who were fed sugar water along with breast milk, compared to exclusively breastfed newborns.
CONCLUSION: All indications are that nutritional and maternal breast problems, laboratory abnormalities and neonatal complications increased when sugar water was added to human milk.