IS HCQ safe for breastfeeding women with rheumatoid arthritis (RA)?

Updated: May 11, 2018
  • Author: Katherine K Temprano, MD; Chief Editor: Christine Isaacs, MD  more...
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Answer

Answer

HCQ is found in human breast milk, and the infant may be exposed to 2% of the maternal dose per kilogram per day. Although the elimination is slow and there is a potential risk for accumulation in the infant, most experts believe that the drug may be continued during breastfeeding. HCQ can potentially displace bilirubin and result in the development of kernicterus. The drug should be discontinued if the neonate has jaundice.

Both EULAR and BSR-BHPR guidelines find HCQ compatible with breastfeeding. [18, 19]


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