Actemra and Breastfeeding

It is unknown if Actemra (tocilizumab) is harmful for nursing infants, or even if it passes through human breast milk. According to the manufacturer of Actemra, breastfeeding should be avoided if you are using this medication. However, every woman's situation is different. By talking to your healthcare provider, the two of you can make a decision that is right for your specific situation.

Can I Take Actemra While Breastfeeding?

At this time, it is unknown if Actemra® (tocilizumab) passes through breast milk in humans. Due to the unknown risks to a breastfed child, the manufacturer of Actemra recommends that women not take this medication while nursing. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding, you should talk with your healthcare provider about taking Actemra.

More Information on Breastfeeding and Actemra

Currently, no research has been done to see if Actemra passes through breast milk in humans. Additionally, it is also unknown if the medication would be absorbed from the digestive tract of the infant. Furthermore, it is also unknown if the drug could cause any serious problems in a breastfed infant.
In general, very little is known about the safety of using most drugs while breastfeeding, as it is usually considered unethical to study medications in women who are nursing. Although this lack of information can be frustrating, it is important to understand that this restriction is designed to protect babies that cannot protect themselves (and cannot consent to such studies).

Talking With Your Healthcare Provider

You should talk with your healthcare provider about breastfeeding and Actemra. Each woman's situation is different, and you and your healthcare provider understand your situation best. After considering what you want and expect, as well as your current health situation and other treatment options, you and your healthcare provider can make a shared decision that is right for you.
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