Women are generally recommended to avoid breastfeeding while taking Norvir. Breastfeeding while you have HIV or AIDS can be dangerous for your nursing child, as the virus can be transmitted through breast milk. Since everyone's situation is different, however, talk to your healthcare provider about Norvir and breastfeeding in your particular situation to discuss the possible risks.
Norvir and Breastfeeding: An Overview
It is not known if Norvir® (ritonavir) passes through breast milk. However, it is almost always recommended that women with HIV or AIDS in developed countries (such as the United States) avoid breastfeeding to help prevent transmitting the HIV infection to their infants. Therefore, most women taking Norvir should avoid breastfeeding.
Norvir and Breastfeeding: What Does the Research Say?
No studies have been conducted on whether Norvir passes through breast milk in humans. However, the HIV virus can pass through breast milk. Therefore, any HIV-infected woman who can safely feed her baby with formula should not breastfeed. There are some situations in which formula feeding is not safe, such as if no clean water supply is available to mix the formula or to wash the bottles. In these situations, it is difficult to know whether breastfeeding or formula feeding is more dangerous. In general, using both breastfeeding and formula feeding is considered the most dangerous, as digestive system irritation or infections from unclean water can allow HIV to pass into the body from the digestive tract more easily.
Talking With Your Healthcare Provider About Norvir and Breastfeeding
You should talk with your healthcare provider about Norvir and breastfeeding. 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 about Norvir and breastfeeding that is right for you.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Norvir [package insert]. North Chicago, IL: Abbott Laboratories;2012 November.
Norvir Tablets and Solution [package insert]. North Chicago, IL: Abbott Laboratories;2010 February.
Norvir Capsules and Solution [package insert]. North Chicago, IL: Abbott laboratories;2009 November.
Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 7th ed. Philadelphia (PA): Lippincott Williams & Wilkins;2005.
eMedTV serves only as an informational resource. This site does not dispense medical advice or advice of any kind.
Site users seeking medical advice about their specific situation should consult with their own physician. Click