The effect of individualised developmental care practices on the growth and hospitalisation duration of premature infants: the effect of mother's scent and flexion position

Authors


  • The research prepared as a PhD thesis was financed by The Scientific Research Projects (BAP) of Management Unit of Atatürk University (BAP-2011-67). Also this research was awarded “Award of Atatürk University the Best Doctoral Thesis in Health Sciences.”
  • [Correction added on 08 August 2014, after first online publication: this article has been edited for language and terminology.]

Correspondence: Funda Kardaş Özdemir, Assistant Professor, Kars Health School, Kafkas University, Şehitler Avenue, Kombina Yolu Street, Main Campus, 36100 KARS, Turkey. Telephone: +90 474 212 8534.

E-mail: fkardas@gmail.com

Abstract

Aim and objective

To assess the effect of individualised developmental care practices on the growth and hospitalisation duration of premature infants.

Background

It is known that individualised developmental care practices enable premature infants to have enhanced weight gain, decreased intensive care complications, and earlier discharge from the hospital.

Design

The study used an experimental design.

Methods

The study was carried out with premature infants who received treatment and care in the newborn intensive care unit (n = 97). Infants were randomised into three groups: mother's scent, flexion and control. Infants were monitored each day until discharge and the measurements were recorded. The data obtained were analysed by t-test, percentage distributions, means, chi-square test, analysis of variance and Bonferroni test.

Results

There was a significant difference between experimental and control groups in terms of means of their discharge weight and height, and this difference was associated with the mother-scent group (p < 0·05). While the within-group difference between hospitalisation and discharge weight means was significant only in the mother-scent group (p < 0·05), the within-group difference between hospitalisation and discharge height means was significant in all three groups (p < 0·05). Even though the within-group difference between means of hospitalisation duration of premature infants was insignificant (p > 0·05), means in the experimental groups were determined to be lower than the means in the control group.

Conclusion

As the methods of mother's smell and flexion position interventions support premature infants’ growth and shorten their hospitalisation duration, it is important to use them routinely at newborn intensive care unit.

Relevance to clinical practice

Newborn intensive care unit nurses may nurse premature infants in the flexion position to enable them to sense their mother's scent and this may to accelerate their growth and shorten their hospitalisation duration.

Ancillary