If you are breastfeeding, Minitran (nitroglycerin patch) should be used with caution. Because no research has been done on breastfeeding while using this skin patch, it's hard to know how safe the medication is for nursing women and their infants. In addition, it's unlikely that this drug would be used in nursing women in the first place, as coronary artery disease is rare in young women.
Is Minitran Safe for Breastfeeding Women?
Currently, it is unknown if Minitran™ (nitroglycerin patch) passes through breast milk in humans. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding a child, you should talk with your healthcare provider before using Minitran. The manufacturer does not forbid breastfeeding women from using the drug, although it does state that the drug should be used with caution in such circumstances.
More Information on Breastfeeding and Minitran
No research has been done to see if Minitran passes through breast milk. Most likely, this lack of research reflects the fact that Minitran is approved to treat chest pain (angina) due to coronary artery disease, a condition that is quite rare in young women.
Nitroglycerin ointment (Nitro-Bid®, Rectiv™) is sometimes used to treat anal fissures. In one study of 40 breastfeeding women who used nitroglycerin ointment to treat postpartum anal fissures, no problems were seen in the babies. This suggests, but does not prove, that Minitran patches would probably be just as safe.
Based on the known actions and side effects of Minitran, if the drug does pass through breast milk, it is reasonable to expect that the drug could cause low blood pressure (hypotension) and headaches in the infant.
Talking With Your Healthcare Provider
You should discuss breastfeeding and Minitran use with your healthcare provider. Each woman's situation is different, and you and your healthcare provider understand your situation best. After considering what you want and expect, as well as your current health situation, the two of you can make a shared decision that is right for you.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
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