Breastfeeding in Patients with Eosinophilic Esophagitis
Sunday, March 4, 2018
South Hall A2 (Convention Center)
Kristen M Lutzkanin, MD, Pooja BM Jhaveri, M.D., Punit Jhaveri, MD
RATIONALE: The impact of breastfeeding on food allergy has been extensively examined, but there is little in the literature regarding the role of breastfeeding in eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE). Our study examines the rate of breastfeeding in EoE patients in our suburban-based academic clinic.

METHODS: After IRB approval, a survey regarding feeding practices during infancy was completed by parents of patients with EoE in our Pediatric Allergy and Immunology clinic. We sought to determine the duration of breast and formula feeding, and age at introduction of solids. The data was entered into RedCap for evaluation by descriptive statistics.

RESULTS: Thirty-seven patients were surveyed. Sixteen percent (n=6) did not respond regarding feeding habits. Fifty-five percent (17/31) of patients initiated breastfeeding; 16% (5/31) were exclusively breastfed. The mean duration of breastfeeding was 6.4 months, and 13% (4/31) were breastfed at least 12 months. This is compared to 84% (26/31) of patients who were formula fed at any time.

CONCLUSIONS: The breastfeeding rate in our EoE patients was low (55%) compared to the national average of 81.1% of children who are ever breastfed. The breastfeeding rate at 12 months is also low (13%) compared to the national average of 30.7%. While the Food Allergy Practice Parameter recommends the encouragement of breastfeeding for the first 4 to 6 months for prevention of food allergy (Category C), the lower rate of breastfeeding in this small cohort of EoE patients than the general population suggests that we should further explore the impact breastfeeding on the development of EoE.