Prenatal breastfeeding education and breastfeeding outcomes

MCN Am J Matern Child Nurs. 2008 Sep-Oct;33(5):315-9. doi: 10.1097/


Purpose: To examine the impact of various breastfeeding outcomes of three cohorts receiving different methods of prenatal breastfeeding education.

Methods: Retrospective cohort design with patients attending a breastfeeding education class at an Army medical center. Controls were matched for sponsor rank, marital status, and smoking status. One hundred ninety-four mothers who expressed intent to breastfeed received breastfeeding education as follows: (a) a class that used video demonstration and group teaching by a lactation consultant, (b) a new mothers' support group with one-on-one teaching prenatally and weekly meetings postpartum, taught by a lactation consultant and a pediatrician, and (c) a control group educated at prenatal visits only. Descriptive statistics, chi-square, ANOVA, unpaired t test, and logistic regression were used to analyze the data.

Results: Women who attended prenatal breastfeeding classes had significantly increased breastfeeding at 6 months when compared to controls (p = .01). There was no significant difference in rates between types of classes offered (p = .45).

Clinical implications: Prenatal breastfeeding education can influence the amount of time women breastfeed. All providers of prenatal care should consider offering such classes in order to improve breastfeeding rates.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Analysis of Variance
  • Breast Feeding / psychology
  • Breast Feeding / statistics & numerical data*
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Health Promotion / organization & administration
  • Humans
  • Intention
  • Logistic Models
  • Mothers / education*
  • Mothers / psychology
  • Mothers / statistics & numerical data
  • Nurse Clinicians / organization & administration
  • Nursing Evaluation Research
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care
  • Patient Education as Topic / organization & administration*
  • Postnatal Care / organization & administration
  • Pregnancy
  • Prenatal Care / organization & administration*
  • Program Evaluation
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Self-Help Groups / organization & administration
  • Social Support
  • Time Factors
  • Videotape Recording