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NEW Updates on Breastfeeding, Infant Feeding, Breast Milk and COVID-19 – excerpts from scientific journal articles – 21 April 2021

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This question relates to COVID-19.

Mija Ververs


Normal user

21 Apr 2021, 16:43

NEW Updates on Breastfeeding, Infant Feeding, Breast Milk and COVID-19 – excerpts from scientific journal articles – 21 April 2021

Dear Colleagues,

We have updated our special repository on Breastfeeding, Infant Feeding, Breast Milk and COVID-19. Since our last update Wednesday 7 April 2021, we have added 22 NEW publications for April (15 new), March (3 new), and February (3 new), and November (1 new).

Click here to view the updated repository

All publications provide emerging evidence related to COVID-19 and

  • Breastfeeding and breast milk (including viral transmission and vaccination issues)
  • Infant feeding recommendations
  • Feeding difficulties in newborns

While there were several recent reviews of international literature, this update also adds emerging evidence from Italy, the United States, Israel, China, Spain, India, the United Kingdom, Italy, Iran, Nepal, and Saudi Arabia.

A recent review proposed strategies for reducing child undernutrition during and after the COVID-19 pandemic, emphasizing the importance of supporting and promoting breastfeeding. Others examined rates of SARS-CoV-2 infection in neonates breastfed by SARS-CoV-2-positive mothers, finding no evidence of transmission via breastmilk. Another study reported presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in a small portion of breastmilk samples of infected mothers – however, they did not find evidence of spliced RNAs produced during viral replication, suggesting that any SARS-CoV-2 RNA detected was not infectious.

Others report on the impact of hospital policies to reduce SARS-CoV-2 transmission on breastfeeding and skin-to-skin care, including a review of studies across the UK, US, China, and Italy. One study reported decreased rates of exclusive breastfeeding during Italian lockdowns, identifying the hospital stay as a critical intervention period. Others report on the use of telehealth to provide breastfeeding support and education during the COVID-19 pandemic.

A recent clinical consensus statement endorses vaccination of pregnant and breastfeeding healthcare workers against COVID-19. Five newly added publications report the presence of SARS-CoV-2-specific antibodies in the breast milk of mothers who had received mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccines, with one reporting secretion of antibodies for as long as 6 weeks after vaccination.

This is by no means an exhaustive list! We will be ending the repository on 1 May, 2021 – look out for our final update around that time.

Happy reading!

Mija Ververs 

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