Chiropractic and Breastfeeding Dysfunction:
A Literature Review
SOURCE: J Clin Chiro Pediatrics 2014 (Mar); 14 (2) ~ FULL TEXT
Lauren M. Fry, BAppSc (CompMed-Chiro), MClinChiro
Elwood, Victoria, Australia
Objective: Breastfeeding an infant has many long and short-term health benefits. Chiropractic care, as part of a multidisciplinary team, has the potential to assist with biomechanical causes of breastfeeding dysfunction. The purpose of this study was to review the literature and explore what evidence there is to support this theory.
Methods: Database searches were performed (PubMed, MEDLINE, Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health and Index to Chiropractic Literature) and hand searches to identify relevant studies. Inclusion criteria were: written in the English language in a peer-reviewed journal, involving infant human participants and a focus on chiropractic treatment for breastfeeding (dysfunction).
Results: Ten articles were reviewed; 5 case studies, 3 case series, 1 clinical trial and 1 narrative.
Conclusions: Limited evidence exists to support chiropractic treatment for infants with breastfeeding dysfunction. Of the 6 case studies, 3 case series and 1 clinical trial found in this report there was a trend towards resolution of breastfeeding issues with chiropractic treatment of biomechanical imbalances. More meticulous, higher evidence studies are needed to provide further evidence of this.
Key Words: breastfeeding, chiropractic, infant, spinal manipulation.
From the Full-Text Article:
Breastfeeding, particularly exclusively for the first 6 months, has been associated with numerous beneficial short and long term health outcomes for an infant. [1, 2] Breast milk has been shown to contain secretory IgA antibodies, lactoferrin, oligosaccharides, numerous cytokines and growth factors which all aid in an infant’s immune response. [3, 4] Purported short term benefits to the infant are a decreased risk of many childhood illnesses.  Incidence of gastro-intestinal infections, otitis media, other respiratory tract infections and asthma, even in those with a strong family history, may be decreased in infants who are breastfed. [6, 7]
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