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Iron Sucrose use while Breastfeeding

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Dec 18, 2022.

Drugs containing Iron Sucrose: Venofer

Iron Sucrose Levels and Effects while Breastfeeding

Summary of Use during Lactation

Limited data indicate that breastmilk iron is not increased after intravenous infusion of iron sucrose. Amounts of iron ingested by the infant would be normal and are not expected to cause any adverse effects in breastfed infants. The oral form of the drug, called sucroferric oxyhydroxide and used as a phosphate binder, is not orally absorbed it is unlikely to reach the breastmilk or adversely affect the breastfed infant. No special precautions are required. Pasteurization of milk by the Holder method reduces the concentration of iron in milk by about 6.5%.[1]

For additional information on iron use during breastfeeding, see the monograph on Iron Salts.

Drug Levels

Maternal Levels. Ten mothers who were iron deficient 2 to 3 days postpartum received a single dose 100 mg of intravenous iron sucrose. The iron concentration in their colostrum was compared to those in 5 similar women who received no iron. Colostrum collected daily for 4 days after the injection contained average iron concentrations between 0.3 and 0.45 mg/kg of milk which is in the low end of the range for postpartum women. No difference in milk iron concentration was found between the treated and control mothers.[2]

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

Effects in Breastfed Infants

In a study of 104 women with postpartum anemia, 78 women received 300 mg of intravenous iron sucrose over 3 days. All women were breastfeeding and had amenorrhea. No adverse reactions were reported in their infants.[3]

Effects on Lactation and Breastmilk

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

Alternate Drugs to Consider

Ferric Carboxymaltose, Ferric Derisomaltose


Mohd-Taufek N, Cartwright D, Davies M, et al. The effect of pasteurization on trace elements in donor breast milk. J Perinatol. 2016;36:897–900. [PubMed: 27253894]
Breymann C, von Seefried B, Stahel M, et al. Milk iron content in breast-feeding mothers after administration of intravenous iron sucrose complex. J Perinat Med. 2007;35:115–8. [PubMed: 17302514]
Giannoulis C, Daniilidis A, Tantanasis T, et al. Intravenous administration of iron sucrose for treating anemia in postpartum women. Hippokratia. 2009;13:38–40. [PMC free article: PMC2633251] [PubMed: 19240819]

Substance Identification

Substance Name

Iron Sucrose

CAS Registry Number


Drug Class

Breast Feeding


Ferric Compounds


Iron Compounds

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Further information

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