Dr. Lawrence Gartner is best known for his studies of the relationship between breastfeeding and newborn jaundice and has published more than 200 papers on this subject and other aspects of breastfeeding. Through 40 years of infant and animal studies, Gartner has demonstrated that prolonged physiologic jaundice in the breastfed infant is a normal and regularly occurring phenomenon.
Known as breastmilk jaundice, this condition provides protection for the newborn through the antioxidant effect of bilirubin. Gartner has also demonstrated that the breastfed baby who receives less than optimal milk intake can have a different form of exaggerated jaundice known as starvation jaundice of the newborn or breast-nonfeeding jaundice.
For the past 42 years, Lawrence Gartner has devoted himself to the improvement of breastfeeding education for physicians, nurses, and the general public through his work with La Leche League International (LLLI), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine. For nearly 25 years, he was the permanent moderator of the LLL Physician’s Seminar, the premier and longest-running professional breastfeeding continuing education program in the US.
Twenty-seven years ago, Dr. Gartner became head of the Work Group on Breastfeeding at the AAP. This work led to the development of the AAP Section on Breastfeeding, of which Gartner was founding chair from 1998 to 2006. The section has produced three breastfeeding policy statements. Breastfeeding and the Use of Human Milk (1997, 2005 and 2012), which have been cited as landmark contributions to the advancement of breastfeeding in the US and abroad. The section has also produced breastfeeding books, influenced the AAP to increase the amount of education in breastfeeding its member pediatricians receive, and encouraged all physicians to support breastfeeding.
Gartner is founder and past president of the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine, a worldwide organization of physicians dedicated to the promotion, protection, and support of breastfeeding and human lactation. He is also past president and cofounder of the North American Society of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition.
In 1988, Gartner retired from the University of Chicago, where he is now professor emeritus. He is the father of two adult children.
(Thank you to Doug Piburn for the photo of Dr. Gartner)
Tags: Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine, American Academy of Pediatrics, and Nutrition, breastfeeding, Breastfeeding and the Use of Human Milk, Hepatology, jaundice, La Leche League, Lawrence Gartner, LLL Physician's Seminar, MD, North American Society of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Section on Breastfeeding, University of Chicago