Against all odds: a retrospective study of women who succeeded at breastfeeding despite extraordinary difficulties

Project report


Hegney, Desley, Fallon, Tony, Crepinsek, Maree, O'Brien, Maxine and Doolan, Jackie. 2005. Against all odds: a retrospective study of women who succeeded at breastfeeding despite extraordinary difficulties. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Title

Against all odds: a retrospective study of women who succeeded at breastfeeding despite extraordinary difficulties

Report TypeProject report
AuthorsHegney, Desley (Author), Fallon, Tony (Author), Crepinsek, Maree (Author), O'Brien, Maxine (Author) and Doolan, Jackie (Author)
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
Number of Pages77
Year2005
PublisherUniversity of Southern Queensland
Place of PublicationToowoomba, Australia
ISBN090975683X
Abstract

The study investigated factors empowering women to continue breastfeeding despite experiencing extraordinary difficulties. The study documented the experiences and characteristics of women who continued to breastfeed(continuing cohort) and those who weaned (non-continuing cohort) despite extraordinary difficulties.
Design.  Retrospective case control.
Methods.  The study was undertaken in south-east Queensland, Australia in 2004. Forty women (20 in each cohort) were recruited over six months. Both quantitative (breastfeeding knowledge questionnaire) and qualitative (semi-structured interviews) data were collected. This paper describes the qualitative data.
Results.  Women from both cohorts expressed idealistic expectations about breastfeeding and experienced psychological distress due to their breastfeeding problems. Those who continued breastfeeding used coping strategies and exhibited personal qualities that assisted them to overcome the difficulties experienced. Women who continued to breastfeed were more likely to report relying on a health professional they could trust for support. This latter cohort were also more likely to report having peers with which they shared their experiences. Non-continuing women expressed feelings of guilt and inadequacy following weaning and were more likely to feel isolated.
Conclusions.  This study has highlighted the methods women use to deal with breastfeeding problems. It has also revealed modificable factors that can improve breastfeeding duration.
Relevance to clinical practice.  The findings indicate that clinicians should:
• Provide information which accurately reflects the breastfeeding experience;
• Ensure systems are in place so that effective postnatal support for breastfeeding difficulties is available;
• Consider screening to ascertain levels of psychological distress, sadness and disillusionment among breastfeeding women;
• Design educational interventions with elements of cognitive skills, problem-solving and self-efficacy training to equip women with the skills to overcome any experienced difficulties.

Keywordsbreastfeeding; infant feeding; breastfeeding difficulties; nurses; nursing; post-natal support; psychological distress
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020420303. Family care
420499. Midwifery not elsewhere classified
520399. Clinical and health psychology not elsewhere classified
Public Notes

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Byline AffiliationsCentre for Rural and Remote Area Health
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McCarthy, A. and Hegney, D.. 1998. "Evidence-based practice and rural nursing: a literature review." Australian Journal of Rural Health. 6 (2), pp. 96-99. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1440-1584.1998.tb00291.x
Extended, expanded, multi-skilled or advanced practice? - rural nurses in Australia 1991-1994
Hegney, Desley. 1997. "Extended, expanded, multi-skilled or advanced practice? - rural nurses in Australia 1991-1994." Collegian: The Australian Journal of Nursing Practice, Scholarship and Research. 4 (4), pp. 22-27. https://doi.org/10.1016/S1322-7696(08)60252-8
An overview of a study into the role and function of the rural nurse in Australia
Hegney, Desley, Pearson, Alan and McCarthy, Alexandra. 1997. An overview of a study into the role and function of the rural nurse in Australia. Adelaide, Australia. University of Adelaide.
The role and function of the rural nurse in Australia
Hegney, Desley, Pearson, Alan and McCarthy, Alexandra. 1997. The role and function of the rural nurse in Australia. Melbourne, Australia. Royal College of Nursing, Australia.
Remote and rural palliative care
McCarthy, Alexandra and Hegney, Desley. 1999. "Remote and rural palliative care." Aranda, Sanchia and O'Connor, Margaret (ed.) Palliative care nursing: a guide to practice. Melbourne, Australia. AUSMED Publications. pp. 83-101
Experiences of regional and rural people with cancer being treated with radiotherapy in a metropolitan centre
Martin-McDonald, Kristine, Rogers-Clark, Cath, Hegney, Desley, McCarthy, Alexandra and Pearce, Susanne. 2003. "Experiences of regional and rural people with cancer being treated with radiotherapy in a metropolitan centre." International Journal of Nursing Practice. 9 (3), pp. 176-182. https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1440-172X.2003.00421.x
Why nurses are attracted to rural and remote practice
Hegney, Desley, McCarthy, Alexandra, Rogers-Clark, Cath and Gorman, Don. 2002. "Why nurses are attracted to rural and remote practice." Australian Journal of Rural Health. 10 (3), pp. 178-186.
Why nurses are resigning from rural and remote Queensland health facilities
Hegney, Desley, McCarthy, Alexandra, Rogers-Clark, Cath and Gorman, Don. 2002. "Why nurses are resigning from rural and remote Queensland health facilities." Collegian: The Australian Journal of Nursing Practice, Scholarship and Research. 9 (2), pp. 33-39.
Retaining rural and remote area nurses: the Queensland Australia experience
Hegney, Desley, McCarthy, Alexandra, Rogers-Clark, Cath and Gorman, Don. 2002. "Retaining rural and remote area nurses: the Queensland Australia experience." Journal of Nursing Administration. 32 (3), pp. 128-135.
Mental health nursing standards and practice indicators for Australia: a review of current literature
Neville, Christine, Eley, Diann, Quinn, John, Weir, Jim, Hegney, Desley, Hangan, Catherine and Grasby, David. 2006. Mental health nursing standards and practice indicators for Australia: a review of current literature. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Analysis of breast feeding data using data mining methods
He, Hongxing, Jin, Huidong, Chen, Jie, McAullay, Damien, Li, Jiuyong and Fallon, Tony. 2006. "Analysis of breast feeding data using data mining methods." Christen, Peter, Kennedy, Paul J., Li, Jiuyong, Simoff, Simeon J. and Williams, Graham J. (ed.) 5th Australasian Conference on Data Mining and Analystics (AusDM 2006). Sydney, Australia 29 - 30 Nov 2006 Sydney, Australia.
Aged care in the future and baby boomers: shall the twain ever meet? - baby boomers and aged care
Fallon, Anthony Bruce, Price, Kay, Hegney, Desley, Abbey, Jennifer, Neville, Christine C., Oxlade, Deborah and Soar, Jeffrey. 2004. "Aged care in the future and baby boomers: shall the twain ever meet? - baby boomers and aged care." Conrick, Moya and Soar, Jeffrey (ed.) 1st Australian Aged and Community Care Informatics Conference (ACCIC'04). Brisbane, Australia 24 - 25 Aug 2004 Brunswick East, Australia.
Evaluation of the health careers in the Bush Health Careers Workshops 1994 - 2002
Hegney, Desley, Eley, Robert and Buikstra, Elizabeth. 2005. Evaluation of the health careers in the Bush Health Careers Workshops 1994 - 2002. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
An analysis of accommodation needs of adults with an intellectual disability in Toowoomba and surrounding areas
Eley, Diann, Hegney, Desley and Boyes, Joanne. 2006. An analysis of accommodation needs of adults with an intellectual disability in Toowoomba and surrounding areas. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
The Toowoomba adult trauma triage tool
Hegney, Desley, Wollaston, Anthony, Fahey, Paul, McKay, Michelle, Miller, Peter and Wollaston, James. 2003. The Toowoomba adult trauma triage tool. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
The administration and supply of controlled and restricted medication by nurses in rural and remote Queensland.
Hegney, Desley, McKeon, Christine, Plank, Ashley, Raith, Lisa and Watson, Jennifer. 2003. The administration and supply of controlled and restricted medication by nurses in rural and remote Queensland. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Psychological services in five South-West Queensland communities: supply and demand
Buikstra, E., Fallon, A. B. and Eley, R.. 2007. "Psychological services in five South-West Queensland communities: supply and demand." Rural and Remote Health. 7 (1), pp. 1-11.
The Toowoomba infant feeding support service project: Report on phase 1 - a longitudinal needs analysis of breastfeeding behaviours and supports in the Toowoomba region
Fallon, Anthony Bruce, O'Brien, Maxine, Plank, Ashley, Doolan, Jackie, Brodribb, Wendy, Hennessy, Jane, Laurent, Kathy and Baker, Sandra F.. 2003. The Toowoomba infant feeding support service project: Report on phase 1 - a longitudinal needs analysis of breastfeeding behaviours and supports in the Toowoomba region. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Aged care nursing in Queensland - the nurses' view
Eley, Robert, Hegney, Desley, Buikstra, Elizabeth, Fallon, Anthony Bruce, Plank, Ashley and Parker, Victoria. 2007. "Aged care nursing in Queensland - the nurses' view ." Journal of Clinical Nursing. 16 (5), pp. 860-872. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2702.2006.01696.x
Key issues in rural health: perspectives of health service providers in Queensland
Eley, Robert, Fallon, Anthony Bruce, Gorman, Don, Fahey, Paul P., Rogers-Clark, Cath and Hegney, Desley. 2006. Key issues in rural health: perspectives of health service providers in Queensland. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Workplace violence in Queensland, Australia: the results of a comparative study
Hegney, Desley, Eley, Robert, Plank, Ashley, Buikstra, Elizabeth and Parker, Victoria. 2006. "Workplace violence in Queensland, Australia: the results of a comparative study." International Journal of Nursing Practice. 12 (4), pp. 220-231. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1440-172X.2006.00571.x
Tenure, mobility and retention of nurses in Queensland, Australia: 2001 and 2004
Eley, Robert, Hegney, Desley, Buikstra, Elizabeth, Plank, Ashley and Parker, Victoria. 2007. "Tenure, mobility and retention of nurses in Queensland, Australia: 2001 and 2004 ." Journal of Nursing Management. 15 (3), pp. 285-293.
A stock-take of existing aged care clinical placements for undergraduate nursing students in Australia
Neville, Christine C., Yuginovich, Trudy, Fallon, Anthony Bruce, Soar, Jeffrey, Boyes, Joanne and Grasby, David. 2006. A stock-take of existing aged care clinical placements for undergraduate nursing students in Australia. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Dealing with distance: rural and remote area nursing
Hegney, Desley. 2006. "Dealing with distance: rural and remote area nursing." Daly, John, Speedy, Sandra and Jackson, Debra (ed.) Contexts of nursing: an introduction. Marrickville, NSW. Elsevier. pp. 213-228
SEAM: improving the quality of palliative care in regional Toowoomba, Australia - lessons learned
Buikstra, Elizabeth, Pearce, Susanne, Hegney, Desley and Fallon, Tony. 2006. "SEAM: improving the quality of palliative care in regional Toowoomba, Australia - lessons learned ." Rural and Remote Health. 6 (1), pp. 1-10.
Planning research in rural and remote areas
Baker, P. G., Hegney, D., Rogers-Clark, C., Fahey, P., Gorman, D. and Mitchell, G.. 2004. "Planning research in rural and remote areas." Rural and Remote Health. 4 (266), pp. 1-11.
The interface of acute and aged care: the role of the nurse in a provincial area
Hegney, Desley, McCarthy, Alexandra, De La Rue, Mary Beth, Gorman, Don, Martin-McDonald, Kris, Fahey, Paul and Pretty, Grace. 2003. "The interface of acute and aged care: the role of the nurse in a provincial area." Australasian Journal on Ageing. 22 (2), pp. 85-90. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1741-6612.2003.tb00472.x
Australian consumers' expectations for expanded nursing roles in general practice: choice not gatekeeping
Hegney, Desley, Price, Kay, Patterson, Elizabeth, Martin-McDonald, Kristine and Rees, Sharon. 2004. "Australian consumers' expectations for expanded nursing roles in general practice: choice not gatekeeping." Australian Journal of General Practice. 33 (10), pp. 845-848.
Patient recruitment for a practice nurse study
Eley, Diann, Hegney, Desley and Patterson, Elizabeth. 2005. "Patient recruitment for a practice nurse study." Australian Journal of General Practice. 34 (11), pp. 991-992.
General practitioners' perceptions of after hours primary medical care services: a Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia study
Hegney, Desley, Fahey, Paul P. and Nanka, Annette. 2004. "General practitioners' perceptions of after hours primary medical care services: a Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia study." Rural and Remote Health. 4 (287).
Lexicality and phonological similarity: a challenge for the retrieval-based account of serial recall?
Fallon, Anthony B., Mak, Eva, Tehan, Gerald and Daly, Charmaine. 2005. "Lexicality and phonological similarity: a challenge for the retrieval-based account of serial recall?" Memory. 13 (3/4), pp. 349-356. https://doi.org/10.1080/09658210344000215
Primary health care and general practice nurses: what is the nexus?
Patterson, Elizabeth, Price, Kay and Hegney, Desley. 2005. "Primary health care and general practice nurses: what is the nexus?" Australian Journal of Primary Health. 11 (1), pp. 47-54. https://doi.org/10.1071/PY05007
Risk reduction in general practice and the role of the receptionist
Patterson, Elizabeth, Forrester, Kim, Price, Kay and Hegney, Desley. 2005. "Risk reduction in general practice and the role of the receptionist." Journal of Law and Medicine. 12 (3), pp. 340-347.
The baby-friendly hospital initiative and breastfeeding duration: relating the evidence to the Australian context
Fallon, Anthony Bruce, Crepinsek, Maree, Hegney, Desley and O'Brien, Maxine. 2005. "The baby-friendly hospital initiative and breastfeeding duration: relating the evidence to the Australian context." Birth Issues. 14 (3), pp. 90-95.
Patient education and consumer medicine information: a study of provision by Queensland rural and remote area registered nurses
Hegney, Desley, Plank, Ashley, Watson, Jennifer, Raith, Lisa and McKeon, Christine. 2005. "Patient education and consumer medicine information: a study of provision by Queensland rural and remote area registered nurses." Journal of Clinical Nursing. 14 (7), pp. 855-862. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2702.2005.01203.x
Separation of conjoined twins: experiences of perioperative nurses and their recommendations
Martin-McDonald, K., McIntyre, P. and Hegney, D.. 2005. "Separation of conjoined twins: experiences of perioperative nurses and their recommendations." International Nursing Review. 52 (1), pp. 52-59. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1466-7657.2004.00239.x
Attitudes of Australian nurses to information technology in the workplace: A national survey
Eley, Robert, Soar, Jeffrey, Buikstra, Elizabeth, Fallon, Tony and Hegney, Desley. 2009. "Attitudes of Australian nurses to information technology in the workplace: A national survey." CIN: Computers, Informatics, Nursing. 27 (2), pp. 114-121. https://doi.org/10.1097/NCN.0b013e318197557e