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Tongue ties and breast feeding
  1. M Griffiths1
  1. 1Southampton General Hospital, UK; mervyn.griffiths@suht.swest.nhs.uk

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The humble tongue tie, like the foreskin, generates enormous quantities of hot air, with little evidence to support it. I welcome the decision by the Archives of Disease in Childhood to commission a Perspective on tongue tie1 in the same month that NICE2 has issued its positive guidance on the same topic.

Hall and Renfrew begin by stating their bias. Mine is that the Archives of Disease in Childhood rejected my two articles on tongue tie, a prospective series and a randomised control trial,3,4 both now published by other peer reviewed journals, but which the Archives of Disease in Childhood rejected following very poor quality “peer review”, and compounded the error by referring me to my Medical Director as someone who was performing procedures which were unethical. This charge was rejected by my Trust.

The interesting question here is how to persuade an intelligent, professional body (in this case, paediatricians), that what they were taught has no evidence to support it. The old textbooks, as well as advocating bottle feeding, state that tongue ties essentially never cause a problem. Hall and Renfrew have looked at the new evidence and conclude that the textbooks are partially right—many babies with tongue ties can feed adequately or normally—but that the textbooks are …

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