Master's Theses



Degree Name

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)


The purpose of this investigation was to evaluate maternal perceptions of breastfeeding effectiveness following both vaginal and cesarean delivery, and to assess differences or relationships between maternal age, parity, neonatal gender, and maternal breastfeeding perceptions. Due to the importance of breastfeeding initiation and duration following childbirth and concerns related to rising rates of operative deliveries, additional research is needed to examine potential adverse effects of cesarean section on breastfeeding. Do mothers who deliver vaginally perceive breastfeeding as more effective than mothers who deliver by cesarean section? To operationalize maternal perception of breastfeeding effectiveness, the Maternal Breastfeeding Evaluation Scale (MBFES, 1994) was employed, and Sister Callista Roys’ Adaptation Model (1986) served as the theoretical framework. Results this investigation may be used to enhance prenatal education and breastfeeding assistance postpartum. A Level II, non-experimental design was used to detect differences between groups and relationships between variables. A convenience sample of newly delivered postpartum women was recruited prior to hospital discharge. Investigation results were statistically analyzed using an independent t-test to compare differences in maternal perceptions of breastfeeding effectiveness after both vaginal and cesarean deliveries, and between primiparous and multiparous women. Spearman’s rho was used to assess if a relationship exists between maternal age and perception of breastfeeding effectiveness. Phi coefficient was used to test a relationship between maternal perceptions of breastfeeding and neonatal gender. Investigation findings indicated that there was no statistically significant difference with maternal perceptions of breastfeeding effectiveness compared to route of delivery of maternal parity. Results also indicated that there was no significant correlation among maternal age or neonatal gender and maternal perceptions of breastfeeding effectiveness. While no significant finds were noted, information obtained throughout the investigation will contribute to the body of knowledge for the discipline of nursing.


Dr. Liane Connelly

Date of Award

Fall 2008

Document Type

Thesis - campus only access


© 2008 Mary Pinkham


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