Citalopram and desmethylcitalopram concentrations in breast milk and in serum of mother and infant

Ther Drug Monit. 1997 Apr;19(2):236-9. doi: 10.1097/00007691-199704000-00021.


A case is presented with measurements of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)-antidepressant citalopram in serum of mother and breast-fed infant and in breast milk. We found a milk-to-serum concentration ratio of approximately 3 for both citalopram and the main metabolite desmethylcitalopram. Peak milk concentrations of citalopram occurred 3-9 h after drug intake by the mother. The infant received approximately 5% of the mother's dose, adjusted for weight. Accordingly, the serum level in the infant of approximately 7 nM corresponded to approximately 1/15 of the trough serum concentration of the mother (104 nM). No signs of drug effects in the infant were observed.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Citalopram / analogs & derivatives*
  • Citalopram / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Milk, Human / metabolism*


  • Citalopram
  • desmethylcitalopram