Breastfeeding: Suggested questions

Last updated: Monday, March 14, 2016

They may not apply to every situation you come across, but here are some questions you should be thinking about in practice.

The Medicine

  • What would happen if the medicine is stopped, or not used? Are there any non-drug options?
  • Have any alternative medicines been considered or tried?
  • Has mum already been taking the medicine? Has the infant already been exposed to it in pregnancy or breastfeeding, and if so have any problems been identified? (e.g. possible side effects, withdrawal symptoms)

The Baby

  • How old is the infant, and is he/she premature or full-term?
  • Is the infant well? Is there anything to suggest that the infant may be at increased risk of drug harm (e.g. kidney or liver dysfunction)?
  • How often is the baby being fed, and are they relying exclusively on breast milk?

Going Forward

  • Who is in a position to change therapy if necessary or document your advice in the patient’s notes? Who else needs to know the answer to this enquiry?