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Taxol & Carboplatin

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  • Taxol & Carboplatin

    I have just been diagnosed with cervical cancer metastasis in my liver. I went through chemotherapy last year for the primary cancer and was treated with Cisplatin. I pumped and dumped during that treatment and for 30 days after and was able to successfully resume breastfeeding my baby in the end.

    This time, I am going to be treated with Taxol and Carboplatin - 6 cycles 21 days apart (chemotherapy administered on the first day and then 20 days break until the next dose). I want to know if it is possible to continue breastfeeding on this type of chemotherapy? My son is now 18 months old and nurses about 3 times a day.

  • #2

    In this situation with an 18 month old infant, I would suggest that it is not worth the risk to the infant to continue to breastfeed while you take this chemotherapy. At 18 months, your infant has received most if not all of the wonderful benefits of breastfeeding. These drugs are potentially dangerous, and platinum has the ability to stay around in various tissues for a long time. I simply do not think it advisable to try to breastfeed around this dosing regimen, as carboplatin hangs around in milk for many weeks following therapy and in your situation with 'repeated' doses of platinum, levels in your plasma, tissues, and milk may be high.

    You have done a wonderful job breastfeeding this long and you have given everything you can to your infant. I'd be cautious during this round of chemotherapy and not breastfeed.

    Tom Hale Ph.D.
    InfantRisk Center


    • #3
      Dear Dr Hale, thank you for your response to my question. I did think it would be unrealistic to continue to breastfeed during treatment this time but I had to ask or I would have regretted it after.

      I know that it can take many months for an established milk supply to disappear completely. On the slight chance that there is still some milk being produced by the time I've finished treatment, how long would it take for the drugs to be completely eliminated from the milk?

      I know with the Cisplatin previously it was 20-30 days after the last dose; would it be more or less with the Taxol/Carboplatin?


      • #4

        I don't know for sure how long to suggest you wait, because after numerous treatments with Cisplatin, your body burden of this drug could be pretty high, as it is stored in your tissues for long periods. I'd suggest you not go back to breastfeeding or certainly get pregnant, at all for many months.

        Tom Hale