Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Retrospective review of serological testing of potential human milk donors


Objective To estimate the prevalence of positive serology among potential donors to a human milk bank.

Design Retrospective review of our experience with donor serological testing at our milk bank over a 6-year interval.

Setting Not-for-profit, regional human milk bank.

Patients Volunteer, unpaid potential donors of human milk.

Interventions Serological testing for syphilis, HIV, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, human T cell lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) and human T cell lymphotropic virus type 2 (HTLV-2).

Main outcome measures Results of serological screening tests performed on potential donors.

Results Of 1091 potential donors, 3.3% were positive on screening serology, including 6 syphilis, 17 hepatitis B, 3 hepatitis C, 6 HTLV and 4 HIV.

Conclusions There is a significant incidence of positive serology among women interested in donating human milk. This implies that there may be significant risk associated with peer-to-peer distribution of human milk from unscreened donors.

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.