Truvada and Breastfeeding

No studies have been conducted on Truvada and breastfeeding, so it is not known if the drug passes through breast milk. However, the HIV virus can pass through breast milk, which means that it could easily be transmitted to a nursing infant. Therefore, if you are taking Truvada, breastfeeding should be avoided and formula feeding used instead.

Truvada and Breastfeeding: An Overview

It is not known if Truvada® (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) passes through breast milk. However, breastfeeding is almost never recommended for women with HIV or AIDS in developed countries (such as the United States) in order to reduce the chance of transmitting the HIV infection to the infants. Therefore, most women taking Truvada should avoid breastfeeding.

Truvada and Breastfeeding: What Does the Research Say?

It is not known if Truvada passes though breast milk in humans. However, as mentioned, the HIV virus can pass through breast milk. 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 Truvada and Breastfeeding

You should talk with your healthcare provider about Truvada 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 Truvada and breastfeeding that is right for you.
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