Associations of Metabolic and Obstetric Risk Parameters with Timing of Lactogenesis II

Nutrients. 2022 Feb 19;14(4):876. doi: 10.3390/nu14040876.


Lactogenesis II is the onset of copious milk production following parturition. Delayed onset of lactogenesis II (DLII) often contributes to poorer lactation performance, which may adversely affect maternal and child health. The present study aims to identify the metabolic and obstetric risk factors for DLII in a secondary analysis of a prospective cohort study following pregnant women through postpartum. We defined the onset of lactogenesis II as delayed if it occurred ≥72 h postpartum. Multiple logistic regression analyses were conducted to evaluate the associations of metabolic and obstetric variables with DLII. Median onset of lactogenesis II was 72.4 h (IQR 60.4-91.6) postpartum, and 55.4% (98 of 177) of women experienced DLII. Time to first breast contact ≥ 2 h postpartum compared to ≤1 h postpartum was associated with DLII (OR 2.71 95% CI 1.12-6.53) with adjustment for age, race, pregravid BMI, primiparity, and mode of delivery, while metabolic variables were not significantly associated with DLII. In this comprehensive examination of potential metabolic and obstetric parameters, earlier timing of putting the infant to the breast remained significantly associated with earlier onset of milk coming in after consideration of the other potential risk factors. Obstetrical practices, including putting the baby to the breast later, may have an important impact on the timing of lactation, and interventions are needed to address this concern.

Keywords: DLII; breastfeeding; delayed onset of lactogenesis II; human milk; infant; lactation; metabolic; mother; obstetric; pregnancy.

MeSH terms

  • Breast Feeding*
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Lactation*
  • Parity
  • Pregnancy
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors