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Revista Paulista de Pediatria

Print version ISSN 0103-0582On-line version ISSN 1984-0462


CHAVES, Roberto Gomes; LAMOUNIER, Joel Alves  and  CESAR, Cibele Comini. Medicines and breastfeeding: update and revision applied to mother and baby care. Rev. paul. pediatr. [online]. 2007, vol.25, n.3, pp.276-288. ISSN 0103-0582.

OBJECTIVE: To present an updated review about the use of medication during breastfeeding. DATA SOURCES: Papers from electronic databases Pubmed, Medline, Lilacs and SciELO, from the last ten years in Portuguese, English and Spanish, were retrieved using the key-words "breastfeeding", "lactation", "human milk" and "use of medication". Recent material from textbooks and relevant papers were also used for this review. DATA SYNTHESIS: Medicines were classified according to the risk associated to lactation use. There is a lack of information about safety of a vast number of medicines by the nursing mothers. Amongst the medicines containing safety information for lactation use, most are considered safe and few are not recommended. Some drugs raise concerns regarding their effect in the reduction of milk production or in causing adverse effects in the breastfed infants. The use of stimulants of milk production is restricted to special situations, not common in the clinical practice. CONCLUSIONS: The frequent need of medication during lactation must raise some concern due to the well-known relationship between its use and weaning. Medical prescription for nursing mothers should be evaluated by risks versus benefits analysis. Currently, the knowledge of pharmacological characteristics of the available medication and the continuous updating about this subject are important tools to choose the medication. A careful assessment allows generally compatibility between medical treatment and breastfeeding.

Keywords : breast feeding; lactation; medication; drugs.

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