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ABSTRACT

Two hundred fifteen women were questioned at six weeks postpartum to identify differences in infant feeding practices among women who had cesarean and vaginal births. Although the study found more women bottlefeeding at six weeks, as compared with vaginal birth women, this difference was not statistically significant (p > .05). Self-reported “commitment to breastfeeding,” however, was found to be associated with breastfeeding success, irrespective of birth type. Commitment to breastfeeding was the only identifiable common denominator between cesarean birth women and vaginal birth women. Several additional variables were found to be associated with breastfeeding success among vaginal birth women, exclusively. These included: being well-educated, married, having prior success breastfeeding, feeling prepared to breastfeed, having one's partner committed to breastfeeding, feeling satisfied with breastfeeding in the hospital, feeding the infant soon after the birth, and having a female infant. Results of this study that suggest variables previously associated with breastfeeding success need to be viewed with caution when dealing with cesarean birth women.