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Antiviral drugs for breastfeeding: how to choose and combine treatment with lactation

ARVI is an unpleasant condition, and doubly for a nursing woman. Along with physical weakness and pain, mother experiences serious emotional experiences.

A woman is faced with a choice: her own health or continued breastfeeding. After all, it is believed that during lactation, medicines taken by the mother can harm the child.

But are breastfeeding antiviral drugs really unacceptable, and is it possible to combine treatment and feeding?

Treatment of ARVI during lactation often implies drug support, especially in the early days of the disease. In this case, some breastfeeding mothers are forced to interrupt or complete breastfeeding.

But this can be avoided. In fact, a woman does not need to choose between her state of health and the natural feeding of the infant.

The main thing – to choose drugs that are compatible with lactation.

Any appointments remain with the doctor. But what if the doctor wrote an antiviral agent, which, according to the instructions, is undesirable during lactation?

The fact is that in the instructions for most modern antiviral drugs there are ambiguous notes about the feasibility of their use for the treatment of nursing mothers. Why it happens? In order for the drug to go on sale, the manufacturer must carefully check it and obtain a huge number of permits.

Conducting large-scale studies on nursing and pregnant women is difficult and financially costly. Therefore, pharmaceutical companies follow the path of least resistance: they write streamlined language.

For example, that the drug can be used during lactation only if the expected benefit prevails over the risks.

Therefore, when choosing an antiviral agent for breastfeeding, the mother should rely on the opinion of her doctor. And for reinsurance, you can refer to other reliable sources of information.

There are independent laboratories and large international organizations that are studying the compatibility of medicines and breastfeeding. Thanks to them, you can get current data on the safety of a drug.

World Health Organization. In 2002 she released a detailed guide describing the compatibility of medicines with breastfeeding.

The book is published in English. However, the basic knowledge or assistance of a standard electronic translator will allow you to successfully find the desired substance and understand its safety level for an infant.

Materials can be found in the public domain on the Internet.

  • Reference “E-lactation”. It operates on the basis of the Spanish Association for the Cultural and Scientific Promotion of Breastfeeding (APILAM). The information is presented in Spanish and English. Initial acquaintance with them will be quite enough to work with this resource. The search is conducted not by the well-known name of the drug, but by its active substance. The latter is usually indicated at the beginning of the instructions for the drug. In the search bar, you must enter the Latin name of the active component. The result of the operation will be one of four risk states for the use of the substance for an infant: very low, low, high, and very high. The first option is completely allowed during lactation. That is, the mother can continue to feed the baby as usual. The second case involves the search for a safer alternative (proposed by the site) or a dosage revision. The third and fourth options are not compatible with breastfeeding. Their use has dangerous consequences for the health of the child. The site works for free.
  • Proceedings of foreign authors. The handbook of Thomas Hale, a professor of pediatrics from the United States, has been popular with physicians, lactation specialists, and nursing mothers for many years. It is regularly updated and updated with fresh information. A few years ago it was released 15th edition. The book is written in English. It can be purchased in print or electronic form.
  • Works of domestic specialists. Among Russian materials, the work of A. A. Zaitsev and O. I. Karpov is worth noting. However, the handbook under their editors dated 1998 year. Therefore, it is worth remembering that some of the information in it has already lost its relevance.

Antiviral drugs during lactation: prohibited and permissible

According to the above sources, such common drugs as Remantadin, Ribavirin and Amantadine are not suitable for the treatment of acute respiratory infections during lactation.

WHO does not recommend nursing women to use any homeopathy, for example, Aflubin and Anaferon. Yes, according to reviews, these tools help and, allegedly, do not harm the baby.

However, WHO experts insist: this is nothing more than a placebo effect, and the true effect of homeopathic remedies on the human body is not known for certain.

When a breastfeeding woman visits a doctor, she can tell him that she wants to continue feeding her baby during the treatment period. Together with the doctor, she selects the best tools that are compatible with this process.

Depending on the level of safety of the proposed medicines, the woman, together with the doctor, chooses one of four options for the development of events.

  1. Continue to feed in the usual way. The option is suitable for safe substances with a minimum level of risk for the infant.
  2. Replace one or more feedings. At the time, the attachments that go after the use of the drug are replaced when its concentration in the blood is maximal. Mom can offer milk to the baby beforehand, expressed on that day, in which there is no “impurity” of the medicine. Some women prepare a small supply of frozen breast milk for several days ahead.
  3. Stop feeding for the duration of the medication. If, after recovery, the mother plans to continue to feed the baby, during treatment she should support the production of milk by decanting. So that the amount of secretion does not decrease, it is necessary to decant approximately in the mode of feeding, including at night.
  4. Complete the feeding and wean the baby. When long-term use of serious drugs is required, it may be advisable to finish breastfeeding.

When prescribed antiviral drugs for a nursing mother are incompatible with the lactation process, a temporary suspension of breastfeeding may cause a decrease in milk production. After all, the less often a baby is applied to the breast, the less a new secret is formed in the mammary gland.

Mom can decant in the usual mode of feeding to maintain the formation of milk at a sufficient level. But if for some reason this is impossible, after recovery, she will often need to put the baby on the chest. Depending on the age of the baby, it is advisable to do it at least 10-12 times a day.

Infants of the first three months should be fed on demand, that is, more often.

In addition to receiving antiviral drugs during lactation, the woman needs bed rest and plenty of warm drinks. Be sure to ventilate the room and carry out wet cleaning.

Therefore, it is important that someone close to you be with you and take care of most of the household chores and care of your baby.

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