Evid Based Nurs doi:10.1136/ebnurs-2011-100453
  • Child health
  • Systematic review

Cochrane review: non-nutritive sucking, kangaroo care and swaddling/facilitated tucking are observed to reduce procedural pain in infants and young children

  1. Angela Huertas
  1. Department of Women's Health, Neonatal Service, University College London Hospital NHS Trust, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Judith Meek
    Department of Women's Health, Neonatal Service, University College London Hospital NHS Trust, 2nd floor North, 250 Euston Road, London NW1 2PG, UK; judith.meek{at}

Commentary on:

Implications for practice and research

  • Kangaroo care, swaddling/facilitated tucking and non-nutritive suckling are effective techniques for diminishing responses to procedural pain in preterm and newborn term infants.

  • The comparative effectiveness of these techniques against other commonly used methods needs further analysis.

  • There is insufficient research in the 1-month to 3-year-old age group to make any recommendations. Different techniques may be appropriate across this group according to age and disability.

  • Further research using evoked cortical responses is essential.


Painful procedures are often performed on infants and young children, and they can have life long consequences, particularly when repeated frequently and if pain is not managed effectively. The preverbal population is especially vulnerable, and …

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