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Cohort study
Among women planning to exclusively breastfeed, in-hospital formula supplementation is associated with almost tripled risk of breastfeeding cessation by 2 months
  1. Amy Brown
  1. Department of Public Health and Policy Studies, Swansea University, Swansea, UK
  1. Correspondence to : Dr Amy Brown, Department of Public Health and Policy Studies, Swansea University, Singleton Park, Swansea SA2 8PP, UK; a.e.brown{at}

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Implications for practice and research

  • Formula supplementation in hospital increases risk of breastfeeding cessation.

  • The more formula received, the greater the risk of cessation.

  • Almost half of infants of mothers who intended to breastfeed received formula supplementation in hospital.

  • Many reasons for which supplements were given could be solved through breastfeeding support rather than supplementation.


Breastfeeding is established as beneficial to infant and maternal health1 and the WHO recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months.2 However, levels of breastfeeding remain low. Reasons for breastfeeding cessation involve both physiological and psychosocial factors.3 Increasing attention …

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  • Competing interests None.