Maternally administered tactile, auditory, visual, and vestibular stimulation: Relationship to later interactions between mothers and premature infants


  • Dr. Rosemary C. White-Traut,

    Corresponding author
    • University of Illinois-Chicago, 845 S. Damen Street, Chicago, IL 60612
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    • Rosemary C. White-Traut, DNSc, is an Assistant Professor in the College of Nursing at the University of Illinois–Chicago.

  • Michael N. Nelson

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    • Michael N. Nelson, PhD, is in the Department of Pediatrics, and Department of Psychology and Social Sciences, Rush–Presbyterian–St. Luke's Medical Center, Chicago.


Thirty-three mother-infant pairs were randomly assigned to one of three groups: control, talking, or interactive (RISS). The later treatment included massage, talking, eye contact and rocking. The intervention (RISS) was administered to determine whether mothers and their preterm infants who actively interacted with each other would differ on later maternal and infant behaviors. The talking and RISS treatments were administered at specified time intervals 24 hours after delivery. Prior to hospital discharge, mother-infant interaction was assessed during a feeding. Significant differences were identified among the three groups for maternal (p <.03) and infant (p <.05) behaviors. These results suggest that active maternal interaction with the premature infant may enhance specific components of mother-infant interaction.