Non-nutritive suck parameters in preterm infants with RDS

Meredith Estep, Steven M. Barlow, Rajesh Vantipalli, Donald Finan, Jaehoon Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Objective: To characterize the integrity of non-nutritive suck (NNS) parameters among three groups of preterm infants ranging from normal to those with progressive degrees of respiratory distress syndrome (RDS). Study Design: NNS compression waveforms were sampled from 55 infants in the neonatal intensive care unit using a silicone pacifier electronically instrumented for intraluminal pressure. Seven select NNS parameters were measured at two different sessions, and statistically analyzed using a General Linear Model Analysis of Covariance. Results and conclusions: Preterm infants with a more extensive history of RDS and oxygen therapy manifest significantly (p ≤ 0.001) degraded performance on six of the seven NNS measures. This trend was disproportionately amplified in preterm infants with moderate-to-severe RDS. Prolonged periods of RDS requiring oxygen therapy may cause maladaptive orosensory experiences, and restrict oral movements which may contribute to delayed NNS development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)28-34
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neonatal Nursing
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Non-nutritive suck
  • Oromotor restriction
  • Preterm birth
  • Respiratory distress syndrome
  • Sensory deprivation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics


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