Modelling consultation rates in infancy: influence of maternal and infant characteristics, feeding type and consultation history.

McConnachie, A. , Wilson, P., Thomson, H., Muirhead, P.E.A. and Munley, A. (2004) Modelling consultation rates in infancy: influence of maternal and infant characteristics, feeding type and consultation history. British Journal of General Practice, 54(505), pp. 598-603.

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Abstract

<p><b>Background</b>: Severity of illness, sociodemographic factors, and breastfeeding have been identified as predictors of consultation rates in infants, and prescriptions for antibiotics have been found to increase future consultation rates in older children. The Baby Check trial (1996–1998) provided detailed information about consultations for 935 babies during their first 6 months.</p> <p><b>Aims:</b> To investigate potential predictors of consultation rates in babies.</p> <p><b>Design of study</b>: A 6-month cohort study of newborn babies originally enrolled into a randomised controlled trial. Maternal and infant characteristics were collected from hospital discharge records. Primary care consultation data for each baby were collected by case note review.</p> <p><b>Setting</b>: Thirteen general practices in Glasgow.</p> <p><b>Method:</b> Multilevel models were used to analyse the number of consultations for each baby during its first 26 weeks, dependent upon the baby's age, the calendar month, maternal and infant characteristics, and previous consultations.</p> <p><b>Results:</b> The strongest predictors of consultation rates were previous consultations, particularly during the preceding week. Breastfed babies and those with older mothers consulted less often. A multilevel model was better than a fixed effects model, with considerable variation in consultation rates between babies.</p> <p><b>Conclusion:</b> Infants' consultation rates over time can be analysed using multilevel models, if details of primary care consultations are available. These models can incorporate the effects of fixed variables and those that change during the follow-up period. Our findings add to previous research linking breastfeeding with reduced morbidity in infancy, and for that reason breastfeeding should continue to be promoted in primary care.</p>

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:McConnachie, Professor Alex and Wilson, Dr Philip and Thomson, Dr Hilary
Authors: McConnachie, A., Wilson, P., Thomson, H., Muirhead, P.E.A., and Munley, A.
Subjects:R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > Robertson Centre
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > General Practice and Primary Care
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Medicine, Dentistry & Nursing
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:British Journal of General Practice
ISSN:0960-1643
ISSN (Online):1478-5242
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