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Bipolor Medication Safe for Breastfeeding?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I posted this in "breastfeeding challenges" but then realized this may be a better place.

 

There's a mom in my playgroup with a 9 month old daughter who was recently diagnosed with Bipolar 2. Up until now she's been taking Zoloft, but her doctor thinks she should start a bipolar medication (I think it was called Lamictal). Her doctor said it's not safe for breastfeeding and wants her to wean her daughter who has been ebf and doesn't take bm in a bottle or sippy cup. She asked me today about how to wean even though her goal was to nurse for at least a year. I told her I would ask around to see if there was an alternative medication or if Lamictal really is ok for breastfeeding. I did a quick search on Lamictal and even though it gets into the milk it seems like the dosage used for bipolar disorder is much less than using it to treat epilipsy and therefore the amount to the baby is very small. Do you think Lamictal would be ok to use during breastfeeding, especially with an older infant who's only nursing about 5 times a day? Or know of any alternatives? Thanks in advance! 

post #2 of 5

Dosage for bipolar can be similar to dosage for epilepsy if the dose is high enough. I take 400 mg daily.

 

I tried to breastfeed on Lamictal and I wouldn't do it again. My daughter was lethargic, had weak suck, didn't want to eat and took 4 weeks to regain birth weight. The worst part was that I had to try to pump and supplement with post partum depression. It was awful.

 

If given the choice between lamictal and breastfeeding I would pick lamictal for mom hands down. There are other meds but they all have some fairly nasty side effects. Sorry

post #3 of 5

I would def. follow the dr's advice.

post #4 of 5
Lamictal is fine for breastfeeding. My neurologist told me that with my DD1 and not only did I take it during breastfeeding, I also took it during pregnancy. There was a huge study on that.
Dr, Hale did studies on it in milk and says it is safe even in infants but that until the baby is a little older than newborn, you need to watch for sedation. A 9 month old should be fine!
http://neonatal.ttuhsc.edu/discus/messages/57/57.html?1293745748
post #5 of 5
Oh yeah, she can get the direct info from her pediatrician because they should have a copy of Medications and Mother's milk.
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