Beta Blockers and Breastfeeding
Research has shown that many beta blocker medications do pass through breast milk and could cause problems in your child. In particular, certain beta blockers can affect your infant's heart rate and blood pressure. If you are breastfeeding or thinking about breastfeeding, make sure to let your healthcare provider know before you start taking a beta blocker.
Are Beta Blockers Safe for Breastfeeding Women?It is known that many beta blockers pass through breast milk in humans. It is possible that beta blockers could potentially cause problems in a nursing infant. Therefore, you should talk with your healthcare provider before taking a beta blocker if you are breastfeeding or planning to start.
Beta Blockers and Breast MilkResearch has shown that the following beta blockers pass through breast milk:
- Acebutolol (Sectral®)
- Atenolol (Tenormin®)
- Betaxolol (Betoptic®, Kerlone®)
- Levatol (Trandate®)
- Metoprolol (Lopressor®, Toprol-XL®)
- Nadolol (Corgard®)
- Pindolol (Visken®)
- Propranolol (Inderal®, Inderal LA, InnoPran XL®)
- Sotalol (Betapace®, Sorine®)
- Timolol (Betimol®, Blocadren®, Istalol®, Timoptic®).
For some beta blockers, no research has been done to see if they pass through breast milk. For these beta blockers, it should be assumed that the medication could potentially pass to the breastfed infant, until proven otherwise. These medications include:
- Bisoprolol (Zebeta®)
- Carvedilol (Coreg®, Coreg CR®)
- Carteolol (Ocupress®)
- Esmolol (Brevibloc®)
- Levobunolol (Betagan®)
- Metipranolol (OptiPranolol®)
- Nebivolol (Bystolic®)
- Penbutolol (Levatol®).
In many cases, your healthcare provider may recommend that you take a beta blocker while nursing as long as your infant can be carefully monitored. In particular, your infant's heart rate and blood pressure should be monitored for any changes.