Antipsychotic drugs and safety concerns for breast-feeding infants

South Med J. 2014 Nov;107(11):686-8. doi: 10.14423/SMJ.0000000000000190.


Antipsychotic drugs prescribed to treat psychiatric symptoms during the postpartum period are secreted into breast milk. Because breast-feeding is crucial to infant development, it is important to select a medication that poses the fewest adverse consequences. Aripiprazole, haloperidol, perphenazine, and trifluoperazine demonstrate no known developmental dangers. Olanzapine, quetiapine, and risperidone are cited as safe, although monitoring is recommended. Chlorpromazine and clozapine may induce developmental concerns. There are limited safety data for asenapine, fluphenazine, iloperidone, loxapine, lurasidone, paliperidone, pimozide, thioridazine, thiothixene, and ziprasidone. Clinicians should choose medications considered to be the safest and prescribe them at the lowest effective doses.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antipsychotic Agents / adverse effects
  • Antipsychotic Agents / metabolism
  • Antipsychotic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Breast Feeding*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Milk, Human / drug effects*
  • Milk, Human / metabolism


  • Antipsychotic Agents