A Randomized Controlled Trial of Intermittent Kangaroo Mother Care versus Conventional Care in Increasing the Rate of Weight Gain among Low-Birth-Weight Neonates

  • Fay S. de Ocampo Philippine General Hospital, University of the Philippines Manila
  • Ma. Esterlita T. Villanueva-Uy National Institutes of Health, University of the Philippines Manila
Keywords: Kangaroo mother care, low birth weight, weight gain, skin to skin, intermittent KMC


Objective. To determine the effectiveness of Kangaroo Mother Care (KMC) in increasing the rate of weight gain and decreasing hypothermia, apnea, and sepsis rate, and shorten hospital stay among low-birth-weight infants.

Methods. Very low birth weight (VLBW) infants (≤1500 grams) were randomized to either the KMC or conventional care group. KMC provided skin-to-skin contact at least 6 hours per day while the conventional group received the usual care in the newborn intensive care unit (NICU). Daily weight measurements and weekly measurements of length, head, and chest circumference were recorded until discharge. Occurrence of hypothermia, apnea, sepsis, and length of stay was noted.

Results. KMC group had a higher mean weight gain per day (p=0.0102). There was no difference in the length, head, and chest circumference between the two groups. Sepsis and apnea rates were not significant between the two groups. Significantly more neonates experience hypothermia in the control group (p<0.0069).

Conclusion. KMC is effective in increasing the weight per day compared with the control group. KMC protects the neonates against hypothermia. There is not enough evidence to show a difference in the incidence of sepsis, apnea, and the length of hospital stay between the two groups.