Studies on allopurinol (Zyloprim) and breastfeeding indicate that this medication does pass through breast milk. However, it may still be taken by a breastfeeding woman. If a woman needs to use allopurinol while breastfeeding, the infant should be carefully monitored for potentially dangerous side effects and toxicity. For instance, a rash should be reported to a healthcare provider immediately, as it can be the first sign of very dangerous side effects.
Is Allopurinol Safe for Breastfeeding Women?
Allopurinol (Zyloprim®) passes through breast milk in humans. However, it is usually considered compatible with breastfeeding, although some precautions are typically recommended.
What Does the Research Say?
Research indicates that allopurinol passes through breast milk. However, if a mother needs to take allopurinol, this usually does not mean that she must stop breastfeeding. Instead, the infant must be carefully monitored for allopurinol side effects and toxicity. Any rash should be reported immediately to your healthcare provider (and your child's healthcare provider), as a rash can be the first sign of very dangerous side effects of allopurinol. Also, periodic blood tests (blood counts) should be done on the child, to rule out serious problems.
Talking With Your Healthcare Provider About Allopurinol and Breastfeeding
You should talk with your healthcare provider about breastfeeding and allopurinol. 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, you and your healthcare provider can make a shared decision about allopurinol and breastfeeding that is right for you.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Zyloprim [package insert]. San Diego, CA: Prometheus Laboratories, Inc.;2003 October.
Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 7th ed. Philadelphia (PA): Lippincott Williams & Wilkins;2005.
National Library of Medicine (US). Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMED). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?LACT. Accessed July 3, 2008.
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