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Cephalothin Pregnancy and Breastfeeding Warnings

Cephalothin is also known as: Keflin

Cephalothin Pregnancy Warnings

Cephalothin has been assigned to pregnancy category B. Animal studies failed to reveal evidence of fetal harm. There are no controlled data in human pregnancies. Cephalothin should only be given during pregnancy when need has been clearly established.

There are no reports of adverse fetal effects of cephalothin during human pregnancy. It has been used safely during all stages of gestation to treat a variety of conditions. In one study, using cephalothin 1 gram intramuscularly, the average peak umbilical cord cephalothin level was 2.8 mcg/mL between one and two hours after dosing. This represented 16% of the corresponding maternal serum level.

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Cephalothin Breastfeeding Warnings

Cephalothin is excreted into human milk in small amounts. Adverse effects in the nursing infant are unlikely. Other cephalosporins have been classified as compatible with breast-feeding by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

In one study of six women who received cephalothin 1 gram intravenously, the average peak milk cephalothin level was 0.51 mcg/mL between one and two hours after dosing. The average milk to maternal plasma drug level ratios were 0.073, 0.260, and 0.500 at 1, 2, and 3 hours after dosing, respectively. While these levels are extremely low, some experts warn against the unknown direct effects to the nursing infant, modification of the infant's bowel flora, and difficulty in the interpretation of culture results in the evaluation of a suspected infection.

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References for pregnancy information

  1. Heikkila A, Erkkola R "Review of beta-lactam antibiotics in pregnancy - the need for adjustment of dosage schedules." Clin Pharmacokinet 27 (1994): 49-62
  2. Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ.. "Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 5th ed." Baltimore, MD: Williams & Wilkins (1998):
  3. "Product Information. Keflin (cephalothin)." Lilly, Eli and Company, Indianapolis, IN.

References for breastfeeding information

  1. Kafetzi D, Siafas C, Georgakopoulos P, Papdatos C "Passage of cephalosporins and amoxicillin into the breast milk." Acta Paediatr Scand 70 (1981): 285-8
  2. Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ.. "Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 5th ed." Baltimore, MD: Williams & Wilkins (1998):
  3. "Product Information. Keflin (cephalothin)." Lilly, Eli and Company, Indianapolis, IN.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

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