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Background: Breast enlargement is a condition that affects nursing mothers in the early postpartum period. Discomfort and tenderness caused by creams are a major factor in early cessation of breastfeeding. Many treatments for breast enlargement have been tried and studied.

Objective: To study the effect of cabbage leaf treatment on the relief of breast pain and stiffness in postpartum women, and its effect on breastfeeding in women with mammary glands.

Inclusion criteria: Lactating mothers aged 13-50 years after delivery, with breast obstruction in the first 2 weeks after delivery. Cabbage leaf treatment can reduce the pain, stiffness and duration of breastfeeding. pain associated with stretching, firmness to the touch, and breast enlargement. Secondary outcome: duration of breastfeeding. Quantitative studies such as RCTs, quasi-randomized trials, and quasi-experimental studies.

Search strategy: English-language studies from the inception of relevant databases up to 2010 were considered for inclusion in this review. Databases searched included: CINAHL, MEDLINE, SCOPUS, EMBASE, Web of Science, and Science Direct. Searches for unpublished studies included: Google Scholar, Mednar, Proquest.

Methodological quality: Studies were assessed for methodological soundness by two independent reviewers using the Joanna Briggs Institute’s standardized critical appraisal tool.

Data Mining: Data were extracted using standardized data mining tools from the Joanna Briggs Institute.

Data synthesis: Results were presented in narrative format as meta-analysis was not appropriate due to heterogeneity of study methods.

Results: This review included four studies: one RCT, two quasi-randomized studies and one quasi-experimental study. In one RCT, after the first application of cabbage leaves, fewer mothers experienced breast enlargement in the second to fourth period than in the control group. At the second assessment, a lower percentage of the intervention group felt their breasts were full (51% vs. 57%, p = 0.68). In one study, the experimental group receiving cabbage leaf treatment improved their pretreatment score from 5.17 (70%) to 3.02 (20%) (p =<0.001). In addition, hot and cold compresses reduced the efficacy score more than cold cabbage leaves (p<0.001). In one study, using cabbage leaves and both hot and cold compresses reduced numerical pain scores (p≤0.001) and reduced breast engorgement pain. The results of the study showed a statistically significant reduction in pain scores for both room temperature by 2.0 points (37%) and chilled cabbage leaves by 2.1 points (38%) (p=0.0001). There was no statistical difference between mean scores before and after room temperature and chilled cabbage leaf treatment (p=0.84). In one study, pre- and post-treatment scores using the Bourbonnais scale showed a statistically significant reduction in pain scores: 1.8 points (30). %) with cabbage leaves and 2.2 points (39%) with gel packs (p=0.0001). One study found that mothers treated with cabbage leaves were 18% more breastfed at 6 weeks of age (p= 0.09). Fewer mothers stopped breastfeeding before 8 days (8.88% vs. 24% p= 0.09), and the total duration of breastfeeding was longer in the intervention group (36 vs. 30 days, p=0.04).

Conclusions: Overall results show that cabbage leaf treatment reduces pain, reduces breast stiffness and prolongs lactation in women with breast enlargement. Current evidence suggests that cabbage leaf treatment may help reduce and prolong breast enlargement pain. Breastfeeding period, but some studies have reported that cabbage leaf treatment is ineffective. Cabbage leaves can be helpful in treating breast congestion. Chilled cabbage leaves can be used for lactation in lactating women, but there is insufficient evidence to recommend the general use of cabbage leaves in breast engorgement protocols. Researchers should aim to achieve greater homogeneity in research by using similar instruments. a means of comparing the effectiveness of cabbage leaf treatments (preferably validated); measure similar outcomes (eg pain score, breast fluid score, breastfeeding duration).

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