Cortisone use while Breastfeeding

Drugs containing Cortisone: Cortone Acetate

Cortisone Levels and Effects while Breastfeeding

Summary of Use during Lactation

Cortisone has not been studied during breastfeeding. Although it is unlikely that dangerous amounts of cortisone would reach the infant, a better studied alternate drug might be preferred. Local injections, such as for tendinitis, would not be expected to cause any adverse effects in breastfed infants, but might occasionally cause temporary loss of milk supply.

Drug Levels

Maternal Levels. Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

Infant Levels. Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

Effects in Breastfed Infants

None reported with any corticosteroid.

Effects on Lactation and Breastmilk

Published information on the effects of cortisone on serum prolactin or on lactation in nursing mothers was not found as of the revision date. However, medium to large doses of depot corticosteroids injected into joints have been reported to cause temporary reduction of lactation.[1][2]

A study of 46 women who delivered an infant before 34 weeks of gestation found that a course of another corticosteroid (betamethasone, 2 intramuscular injections of 11.4 mg of betamethasone 24 hours apart) given between 3 and 9 days before delivery resulted in delayed lactogenesis II and lower average milk volumes during the 10 days after delivery. Milk volume was not affected if the infant was delivered less than 3 days or more than 10 days after the mother received the corticosteroid.[3] An equivalent dosage regimen of cortisone might have the same effect.

A study of 87 pregnant women found that betamethasone given as above during pregnancy caused a premature stimulation of lactose secretion during pregnancy. Although the increase was statistically significant, the clinical importance appears to be minimal.[4] An equivalent dosage regimen of cortisone might have the same effect.

Alternate Drugs to Consider

Methylprednisolone, Prednisolone, Prednisone

References

1. McGuire E. Sudden loss of milk supply following high-dose triamcinolone (Kenacort) injection. Breastfeed Rev. 2012;20:32-4. PMID: 22724311

2. Babwah TJ, Nunes P, Maharaj RG. An unexpected temporary suppression of lactation after a local corticosteroid injection for tenosynovitis. Eur J Gen Pract. 2013;19:248-50. PMID: 24261425

3. Henderson JJ, Hartmann PE, Newnham JP, Simmer K. Effect of preterm birth and antenatal corticosteroid treatment on lactogenesis ii in women. Pediatrics. 2008;121:e92-100. PMID: 18166549

4. Henderson JJ, Newnham JP, Simmer K, Hartmann PE. Effects of antenatal corticosteroids on urinary markers of the initiation of lactation in pregnant women. Breastfeed Med. 2009;4:201-6. PMID: 19772378

Cortisone Identification

Substance Name

Cortisone

CAS Registry Number

53-06-5

Drug Class

Corticosteroids, Systemic

Glucocorticoids

Anti-Inflammatory Agents

Administrative Information

LactMed Record Number

76

Last Revision Date

20131206

Disclaimer

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