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Pacifier use as a risk factor for reduction in breastfeeding duration: a systematic review

Uso de chupeta como fator de risco para o tempo de amamentação: uma revisão sistemática

This systematic review of literature proposes to establish whether pacifier use is a risk factor for a reduction in the duration of breastfeeding. A search of the Medline and Lilacs databases was carried out for articles published between 1996 and 2006 using the following descriptors: "breastfeeding" and "pacifier". Articles were excluded if they: had no open access abstracts; did not contain estimators testing the degree of association between breastfeeding duration and pacifier use; involved a follow-up loss of greater than 20%; were written in languages other than Portuguese, English and Spanish; covered specific population categories, such as pre-term babies or mothers who experienced difficulty breastfeeding; or were based on information provided by the mother or a health care professional. Nineteen articles were chosen according to the criteria outlined above; of these, one was a randomized clinical trial, eleven were prospective cohort studies and seven were cross sectional studies. The review concludes that pacifier use is a risk factor for breastfeeding duration, although the performance mechanism remains obscure. Other risk factors relate to the children, their parents and the hospital care they receive regarding the early interruption of breastfeeding. There is a need to standardize the methodology for investigating the association between pacifier use and breastfeeding duration, in order to provide scientific knowledge on this subject.

Breastfeeding; Pacifiers; Weaning

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