Background Necrotising enterocolitis (NEC) incidence is lower in preterm infants who are fed their own mother’s milk (OMM) compared to formula. Possible mechanisms include protective factors of human milk or detrimental effects of formula. OMM is often unavailable, especially in the first few days following birth, while frequently donor milk is not available either.
Objectives To quantify the association between OMM intake during the first days of life and the incidence of sepsis, NEC and death.
Methods Retrospective single centre study in infants with a birth weight < 1500g. Intake of OMM/formula during the first ten days of life were recorded. Episodes of sepsis, NEC and death were registered during 60 days. Statistics: Cox regression analysis.
Results n=349 infants. OMM intake during the first 5 days of life was associated with a lower incidence of NEC, sepsis and/or death during the first 60 days of life (hazard ratio(HR) of the category 0.01–50% OMM intake: 0.49 [95%CI 0.28, 0.87], HR of the category 50.01–100% OMM intake: 0.50 [95%CI 0.31, 0.83], compared to no OMM). During days 6–10, the protective effect was present if >50% of intake was OMM (HR=0.37 [95%CI 0.22, 0.65]).