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Influence of past breast feeding on pattern and severity of presentation of juvenile idiopathic arthritis

Lookup NU author(s): Emerita Professor Helen Foster



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


This analysis aimed to study the influence of breast feeding on the pattern and severity of juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) at presentation. The association between ever versus never breast feeding and disease severity at onset was compared in 923 children with JIA recruited to the UK Childhood Arthritis Prospective Study at first presentation to rheumatology. Fifty six per cent of children were ever breast fed (median 3.7 months). Breastfed children reported a lower median age at onset, a lower Childhood Health Assessment Questionnaire (CHAQ), a measure of disease severity, lower parent general evaluation scores and lower pain at presentation. There was a trend towards a higher proportion of breastfed children with rheumatoid factor-negative polyarthritis, but lesser enthesitis-related and psoriatic arthritis. There was a statistically significant inverse association between breast feeding and high CHAQ, even after adjusting for differences in socioeconomic status (adjusted OR 0.61 (95% CI 0.39 to 0.95)). Further work to understand the reasons behind these associations is required.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Hyrich KL, Baildam E, Pickford H, Chieng A, Davidson JE, Foster H, Gardner-Medwin J, Wedderburn LR, Thomson W

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Archives of Disease in Childhood

Year: 2016

Volume: 101

Issue: 4

Pages: 348-351

Print publication date: 01/04/2016

Online publication date: 14/09/2015

Acceptance date: 24/06/2015

Date deposited: 12/04/2017

ISSN (print): 0003-9888

ISSN (electronic): 1468-2044

Publisher: BMJ Publishing Group


DOI: 10.1136/archdischild-2014-308117


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