ORAL MOTOR INTERVENTION
What is PIOMI?
Premature Infant Oral Motor Intervention (PIOMI) is a 5-minute oral motor intervention using a pinky finger in the and around the mouth of preterm infants as young as 29 weeks PMA. PIOMI aims to mimic the in-utero oral experience that strengthens and develops feeding mechanisms. The 8 steps provide assisted movement to activate muscle contraction and provide movement against resistance to build strength in areas needed for subsequent bottle and breastfeeding. The intervention increases functional response to pressure and improves control of movements for the lips, cheeks, jaw, and tongue.
Evidence demonstrates that preterm infants who are offered PIOMI will have:
Earlier readiness to feed
Reduced transition time to full oral feedings
Decreased length of hospital stay
Increased mean Neonatal Oro-Motor Assessment Scale score
Improved Early Feeding Skills (EFS) Assessment
Improved Preterm Oral Feeding Readiness Assessment Scale (PTOFRAS)
Improved LATCH score
Increased direct breastfeeding rates at 1 month and 3 months after discharge from the NICU
Improved scores on neurological battery at 3 and 6 month follow up
Excerpt from Training Video
RESEARCH & EVIDENCE
The PIOMI has been the focus of multiple randomized controlled trials in the USA and internationally. PIOMI evidence has been included in multiple systematic reviews (Cochrane) and meta-analyses. Evidence is consistently strong for earlier readiness to feed, faster transition to full feeds, and shorter length of stays.
See list of all PIOMI Studies and Presentations here:
Join leading hospitals and NICU teams who have completed on-site training to implement PIOMI as their oral motor standard of care.
Dr. Knoll trains RNs, MDs, NNPs, OT, PT, SLPs, and Parents to implement PIOMI in your NICU.
Since the initial publication of the PIOMI in 2011, staff in more than 75
NICUs in over 20 countries have been formally trained to implement PIOMI in their NICU or Clinic.
To bring the PIOMI to your NICU, contact Dr. Brenda Lessen Knoll.
"I am an Italian speech therapist and a pediatric nurse. I read about PIOMI and contacted Dr. Brenda Lessen. I had the pleasure to meet her in Chicago where I received personalized training and certification to use PIOMI and also to be a trainer. I was then able to use this tool within my NICU at Giannina Gaslini Hospital in Genoa, with excellent results both from a clinical and research point of view.
Thanks to my certification as a trainer, we organized the first course on preterm infant oral feeding with PIOMI training in Bologna, Italy in January 2020 with excellent results and great interest. I sincerely thank Brenda for her amazing work and training me on PIOMI, for her kindness and professionalism, and for the work we are doing together! I look forward to continuing our work together!"
Marta Majoli, SLP
Speech and Language Pathologist
Giannina Gaslini Hospital Genoa, Italy