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Klonopin: Benefits outweigh the risks?

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  • Klonopin: Benefits outweigh the risks?

    I am currently pregnant with twins and I'm trying to figure out if it will be safe for me to breastfeed. My doctors have both referred to the studies, but remain neutral and have left the decision up to me.

    I would like to breastfeed if it's safe? but if it's a risk then I will feed formula.

    Also, if my twins are born early does that change the decision. There is some risk they will come before 37 weeks gestation and if they are early with no breathing issues to note is it safe to breastfeed then?

    I am on 2mg 1x a day (I take the medicine at night before bed.) Also, is it important to pump and dump at the 4 hour mark when the med reaches it's peak levels?

  • #2
    Dear rooktwins,

    Clonazepam (Klonopin) is a typical benzodiazepine sedative. Breastmilk levels are low, but this medication has a long half-life (time it takes for half of the drug to be eliminated). An alternative medication with a shorter half-life, lorazepam, is preferred. The benzodiazepine class of medications should be used short term, intermittently, and at low doses during breastfeeding. You should observe your infants for sedation and apnea. If noted, wait longer from your dose to breastfeed. If your infants are born prematurely, the risk of sedation is greater as their ability to eliminate the drug from their system is decreased.

    You do not necessarily have to pump and discard you milk.

    The medication will be absorbed from your milk and eliminated normally. It is important to pump regularly to maintain your milk supply. Let me know if you have further questions. There are a variety of medications that are compatible with breastfeeding depending on what condition you are being treated for. Call us at the InfantRisk Center, 806-352-2519 for further information. We are open 8 to 5, Monday through Friday, CDT.

    Cindy Pride, MSN, CPNP
    TTUHSC InfantRisk Center


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