Objective: The purpose of this randomized pilot study was to collect preliminary data regarding the feasibility and effects of early initiation of milk expression on the onset of lactogenesis stage II and milk volume in mothers of very low birth weight (VLBW) infants.
Study design: Twenty women were randomized to initiate milk expression within 60 min (group 1) or 1 to 6 h (group 2) following delivery. Milk volume and timing of lactogenesis stage II was compared between groups using Wilcoxon's rank sum tests.
Result: Group 1 produced statistically significantly more milk than group 2 during the first 7 days (P=0.05) and at week 3 (P=0.01). Group 1 also demonstrated a significantly earlier lactogenesis stage II (P=0.03).
Conclusion: Initiation of milk expression within 1 h following delivery increases milk volume and decreases time to lactogenesis stage II in mothers of VLBW infants.