Lifelike simulation models are used for training and education of medical professionals. Realistic medical simulators have been used in teaching breast examinations, CPR, intubation, and in birthing simulations. Breast models, specifically, have been used successfully to teach about physical examinations of the breast as it pertains to breast cancer, wide local excisions of breast cancer, and lactation education.
Physicians and nurses are expected to support breastfeeding mothers. However, there is a lack of standardized breastfeeding education throughout training programs and hospitals. As a result, providers lack the necessary confidence and skills to guide mothers throughout the breastfeeding experience. The hands-on nature of breastfeeding management demands the implementation of application-based learning tools to improve skills retention and patient breastfeeding outcomes.
Low milk production is one of the main reasons for premature breastfeeding cessation. Smartphone apps have the potential to assist mothers with promoting, interpreting, tracking, or learning about milk production. It is unknown whether breastfeeding apps contain high-quality, engaging, and diverse content and features that could be used by mothers to increase their breastfeeding self-efficacy and answer their questions about milk production.
Traditional breast simulators are not realistic and cannot provide comprehensive lactation training. LiquidGoldConcept (LGC) developed the Lactation Simulation Models (LSMs) to teach health students and providers how to manage common breastfeeding issues. Until this study, the breast models for breastfeeding education have not been systematically validated by breastfeeding medicine experts.