In studies on Reglan (metoclopramide) and breastfeeding, the medication was shown to pass through breast milk, causing mild problems in the nursing infants. Research also shows that the drug can increase the production of breast milk. Before using Reglan, breastfeeding women should talk to their healthcare providers about potential risks. Since depression is a possible side effect of the drug and women are at an increased risk for depression after giving birth, Reglan may worsen this problem.
Is Reglan Safe for Breastfeeding Women?
Reglan® (metoclopramide) passes through breast milk in humans. It is sometimes used to stimulate breast milk production in women. It is important to check with your healthcare provider before taking Reglan while breastfeeding.
Reglan and Breastfeeding: What Does the Research Say?
Studies have shown that Reglan passes through breast milk. There have been reports of mild problems (such as digestive upset) in breastfed infants whose mothers took Reglan.
Sometimes, Reglan is used to stimulate breast milk production. Reglan increases the level of prolactin, a hormone important for breastfeeding. Studies have shown that Reglan can increase the production of breast milk and may speed up the transition from colostrum to regular breast milk.
More importantly, depression is one of the possible side effects of Reglan. Since women are at an increased risk for depression after giving birth (known as postpartum depression), Reglan may possibly make this problem worse. Be sure to let your healthcare provider know right away if you think you may be depressed after giving birth.
Talking With Your Healthcare Provider About Reglan and Breastfeeding
You should talk with your healthcare provider about Reglan and breastfeeding. 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, the two of you can make a shared decision about Reglan 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):
Reglan [package insert]. Baudette, MN: ANI Pharmaceuticals, Inc.;2011 August.
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