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P055. A population-based study: do women with Crohn's disease breastfeed?

M. Julsgaard1, M. Nørgaard2, C.L. Hvas1, D. Buck2, L.A. Christensen1

1Aarhus University Hospital, Department of Gastro­enterology V, Aarhus C, Denmark; 2Aarhus University Hospital, Department of Clinical Epidemiology, Aalborg, Denmark

Aim: Medical treatment of Crohn's disease (CD) is important for induction and maintenance of remission. We aimed to assess how medical treatment of women with CD in the postpartum period was associated with breastfeeding behaviour. Furthermore an association between breastfeeding and risk of relapse was investigated.

Methods: Women with CD in North Western Denmark, who had given birth between 2000–2005 among a population of 1.6 million. Diagnoses and birth outcome were confirmed by population-based medical databases. Breastfeeding behaviour, relapse, medical treatment and counseling regarding medical treatment were investigated by questionnaires. Medical treatment was additionally confirmed through regional prescription databases.

Results: Of 132 women, 105 (80%) fulfilled the questionnaire. Overall 59 (56%) received medical treatment in the postpartum period, of whom 50 (85%) breastfed their infants on an average period of 5 months. In the 46 women (44%) who did not receive medical treatment 42 (91%) breastfed their infants on an average period of 7 months. More than 40% (95% CI 28.1–54.3) of the women had received counseling on medical treatment and breastfeeding, most often by a gastroenterologist. Among the women in medical treatment 11 of the 50 women (22%) who breastfed their infants experienced a relapse compared with 4 of the 9 women (44%) who did not breastfeed their infants.

Conclusion: The majority of women with CD breastfed their infants and breastfeeding behaviour did not differ by medical treatment status. Among women in medical treatment breastfeeding was associated with a lower risk of relapse.