The manufacturer of Avalide (irbesartan/HCTZ) recommends that women avoid this drug while breastfeeding. Avalide is a combination of two medications, one of which is known to pass through human breast milk in small amounts and may affect breast milk production. Although some experts may consider it safe to use this drug while nursing, make sure to talk to your healthcare provider before taking it.
It is unknown if irbesartan passes through breast milk; however, hydrochlorothiazide is known to pass through breast milk. The manufacturer of Avalide recommends that women not use this medication while breastfeeding. Therefore, if you are nursing a child, talk with your healthcare provider before taking Avalide.
More Information on Breastfeeding and Avalide
Irbesartan has been shown to pass through breast milk in rats. However, no studies have been done to see if it passes through human breast milk.
Hydrochlorothiazide is known to pass through human breast milk in very small amounts. Many experts, however, consider it safe for use during breastfeeding when the mother is taking less than 50 mg a day. Higher hydrochlorothiazide dosages may reduce breast milk production. In fact, high doses of the medication have been used to prevent breast milk production after childbirth.
Talking With Your Healthcare Provider
You should discuss breastfeeding and Avalide use with your healthcare provider. 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 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):
Avalide [package insert]. Bridgewater, NJ: sanofi-aventis U.S. LLC;2012 October.
Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 8th ed. Philadelphia (PA): Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2008.
National Library of Medicine (US). Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMED). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?LACT. Accessed February 10, 2011.
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