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Ajmaline infusion and breastfeeding

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  • Ajmaline infusion and breastfeeding

    I am 37 and currently breastfeeding an eleven-month-old baby. Recently, a first degree relative died suddenly, and as a consequence the family is now being investigated for Brugada syndrome. The standard diagnostic test for this potentially fatal condition is a provocation test using an intravenous infusion of ajmaline over ten minutes.

    The drug has a very short half-life (ten mins), but the specialists treating me are unsure whether I would need to give up breastfeeding to take the test. I breast fed my other children until age three, so to give up nursing now would be a shock to me.

    I wonder if you can offer any advice.

  • #2

    Ajmaline has 3 half-lives ranging from 1.6 minutes to 7 hours. The only one that matters is the 1.6 minutes. Thus after about 10 minutes, virtually all of the drug is in the periphery and out of the plasma compartment. Theoretically you could return to breastfeeding about 60 minutes. However, I'd suggest you wait 24 hours at most, and return to breastfeeding.

    Tom Hale Ph.D.