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Eastern team at the forefront of tongue-tie study

Eastern team at the forefront of tongue-tie study

The biggest research project into the treatment of tongue-tie has begun with an Eastern NHS research team at the forefront of a national study. The Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) has become the first in the country to recruit to the FROSTTIE clinical trial to help babies with tongue-tie, which can affect their ability to breastfeed.

Staff at the NNUH have enrolled the first five babies to the national trial, which aims to find out if skilled support for breastfeeding on its own, or together with a minor snip (frenotomy) helps mothers and their babies to breastfeed. The trial, which aims to recruit 870 patients, is being coordinated by the University of Oxford and has been funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The study is supported locally by NNUH Clinical research and Trial Unit.

Breastfed babies aged less than 10 weeks with a diagnosis of tongue-tie are eligible for inclusion on the FROSTTIE study, as long as the parents are willing to enter the trial and have the decision about frenotomy decided randomly. All babies will continue to receive breastfeeding support. A frenotomy involves cutting the short, tight piece of skin connecting the underside of the tongue to the floor of the mouth and is a quick procedure that can be carried out during an outpatient appointment.

Louise Coke, Senior Paediatric Research Nurse at NNUH, added: “The paediatric research team here at NNUH are highly experienced when it comes to recruiting and supporting children and their families through clinical trials. FROSTTIE has been a real learning curve for us as these are our youngest ever patients and we feel really privileged to work with these families at such a new and vulnerable time in their journey as parents. It has also been fantastic to continue our strong history of multidisciplinary working by working with Luisa and her team – we really hope that this encourages other research teams to think about working across different departments and disciplines.”

The maternity team at NNUH are proud to be accredited with the prestigious UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund) Baby Friendly Initiative (BFI) Award.

For more information about the study, visit and for more information about NIHR reproductive health click here.