Infantile Colic

Infantile Colic – The perspective of German and Polish Pediatricians in 2020

crying babies, maternal depression, parental burden, premature termination of breastfeeding, probiotics, shaken baby syndrome; simethicone, synbiotics, early infancy


Objective: Objective of the study was to characterize how infantile colic is perceived and managed by German and Polish pediatricians.

Methods: Data in both countries were collected by using a paper questionnaire with seven questions and predefined and free text fields for the answers.

Results: Answers from 160 German and 133 Polish pediatricians were collected. The average of occurrence rates estimated by both responder groups were at the higher end of published rates. The majority of pediatricians from both countries rated the parental burden caused by infantile colic to be high or very high. Pediatricians’ awareness about the association between infantile colic and maternal depression and pre-mature termination of breastfeeding is relatively well established in both countries. While more than 90% of German pediatricians stated knowledge of infantile colic being a major risk factor for shaken baby syndrome, this knowledge was only declared by half of the Polish responders. Pharmacological interventions, pro-/ synbiotics or simethicone, are part of the treatment repertoire of nearly all responding pediatricians. In addition, non-pharmacological interventions (e.g., change of feeding, change of parental behavior) are also among the employed interventions.

Conclusion: Results of this study will allow to better design and prioritize communication about infantile colic directed at pediatricians.