6 answers

Bacterial Infection and Breastfeeding


I am so frustrated! I thought I was having recurrent yeast infections but finally found out that I have a bacterial infection. This wouldn't be such a big deal but I am currently breastfeeding my five month-old. I have been prescribed two different medications that both have warnings to not use while breastfeeding. My physician recommended not to use them but the OB-GYN said it is what they give to pregnant women to treat bacterial infections. Does anyone have any advice or have had a similar experience? I just want to get this cleared up.

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So What Happened?™

Thank you everyone for responding! The pediatrician told me to use the prescriptions with caution so the OB prescribed a cream. Supposedly it is not as effective but I'm praying it will work. Also, thanks for info about Dr. Hale. I checked out his website and it's a great reference.
Merry Christmas!

More Answers

It depends on what type of bacterial infection. If its not life threatening, you should postpone treatment until you are finished breasdtfeeding. Otherwise you need to pump while being treated and then you run the risk of losing the baby to an inferior formula product.

You have the names of the prescriptions? Thomas Hale is the expert on breastfeeding and medications. You can look up the medicines in this forum and see what the advice is: http://neonatal.ttuhsc.edu/lact/medicationforumspage.html Use the search box at the top of the page. HTH.

I'm a mom of 11 month old twins who I am also breastfeeding. I am also a registered dietitian and a certified breastfeeding educator. Many times when doctors or pharmacists are unsure about the use of a medication while breastfeeding, they are very conservative and advise you not to take it while breastfeeding or to stop breastfeeding unnecessarily so you can take the medication. However, there are many resources that can provide guidance on the safety of medications while breastfeeding. One is a database within the National Institute of Health called LactMed (google Lactmed) and another is a book by Thomas Hale called Medications and Mother's milk. I have also found peditricians to be great resources. Hope this helps!

Call a LLL leader or look in the book Medications and Mother's Milk. Many (most) medicines are compatable with breastfeeding. If it's not, there certainly is something that can be substituted. Make sure you let your doctor know you are breastfeeding and it is important to you to continue. They should work with you.


I am a RN and IBCLC and I definately agree with the post about checking with Dr. Hale's reccomendation. The drug companies put the not for breastfeeding women warning on the meds to cover themselves if they have not done studies to see if they are safe. There are MANY medications that are very safe to be taken during breastfeeding. I would check with Dr. Hale but I am sure your OB-GYN is correct and they are fine for you to take.

I would always call my sons pediatrician if I was given a prescription while breast-feeding. They will know if it's safe, and it only takes a minute to call the office. This won't help the bacterial infection, but when I was nursing, and had some issues with yeast infections, I heard to take acidophilus and it cleared the infection right up. My nurse at my OB said acidophilus doesn't work, but I tried it anyway, and it really did work... it was nice to breast-feed pain free again!

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