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Breastfeed Med. 2008 Mar;3(1):34-7. doi: 10.1089/bfm.2007.0032.

Methadone maintenance and long-term lactation.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland 21224, USA.


Breastfeeding among methadone-maintained women is frequently challenged because of unclear guidelines regarding this practice. Previous research has confirmed that concentrations of methadone in breastmilk in the neonatal period are low. Currently unknown are the concentrations of methadone in breastmilk among women who breastfeed for longer periods of time. The purpose of this research is to examine concentrations of methadone in the plasma and breastmilk of women who breastfeed their infants beyond the neonatal period. Four methadone-maintained women provided blood and breastmilk samples up to 6 months postpartum. The concentrations of methadone in blood and breastmilk were low, contributing to the recommendation of breastfeeding for some methadone-maintained women.

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