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Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed®) [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Institute of Child Health and Human Development; 2006-.

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Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed®) [Internet].

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Last Revision: April 19, 2021.

Estimated reading time: 1 minute

CASRN: 548-73-2

image 134978003 in the ncbi pubchem database

Drug Levels and Effects

Summary of Use during Lactation

Because little information is available on the long-term use of droperidol during breastfeeding, an alternate drug may be preferred, especially while nursing a newborn or preterm infant. Single-dose or short-term use during breastfeeding, such as during surgery, is unlikely to adversely affect the breastfed infant, especially if the infant is older than 2 months.[1] When multiple doses are given to the mother, monitor the infant for drowsiness, especially in younger, exclusively breastfed infants and when using combinations of psychotropic drugs.

Drug Levels

Maternal Levels. Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

Infant Levels. Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

Effects in Breastfed Infants

A randomized study compared the breastfed infants born by cesarean section whose mothers received either morphine or morphine plus droperidol by patient-controlled analgesia postoperatively. On days 1 and 2 of life, the infants whose mothers received droperidol had a lower neonatal neurologic and adaptive capacity score (NACS) than those who received morphine only.[2]

One breastfed (extent not stated) infant whose mother was taking droperidol had a somewhat decreased intellectual development on testing, but her mother had also taken olanzapine, clonazepam, sertraline, thioridazine and valproic acid while breastfeeding.[3]

Effects on Lactation and Breastmilk

Hyperprolactinemia has been reported in patients taking long-term droperidol[4,5] and after short-term use during surgical procedures.[6,7] The maternal prolactin level in a mother with established lactation may not affect her ability to breastfeed.


Spigset O. Anaesthetic agents and excretion in breast milk. Acta Anaesthesiol Scand. 1994;38:94–103. [PubMed: 8171959]
Bonhomme V, Brichant JF, Wuilmart M, et al. Droperidol reduces nausea after caesarean section but alters the neurological status of the breastfed infants. Anesthesiology. 2002;96:A1044. Abstract.
Gardiner SJ, Kristensen JH, Begg EJ, et al. Transfer of olanzapine into breast milk, calculation of infant drug dose, and effect on breast-fed infants. Am J Psychiatry. 2003;160:1428–31. [PubMed: 12900304]
Langer G, Puhringer W. Haloperidol and droperidol treatment in schizophrenics. Clinical application of the "prolactin-model". Acta Psychiatr Belg. 1980;80:574–83. [PubMed: 7234451]
Smith S, Wheeler MJ, Murray R, et al. The effects of antipsychotic-induced hyperprolactinaemia on the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis. J Clin Psychopharmacol. 2002;22:109–14. [PubMed: 11910254]
Naito Y, Tamai S, Fukata J, et al. Comparison of endocrinological stress response associated with transvaginal ultrasound-guided oocyte pick-up under halothane anaesthesia and neuroleptanaesthesia. Can J Anaesth. 1989;36:633–6. [PubMed: 2555076]
Jullien Y, de Rodez M, Bonardet A, et al. Ann Anesthesiol Fr. 1980;21:459–66. [Comparison of postoperative blood levels of prolactin and somatotropin after two methods of anesthesia] [PubMed: 6110401]

Substance Identification

Substance Name


CAS Registry Number


Drug Class

Breast Feeding



Antipsychotic Agents


Dopamine Antagonists

Gastrointestinal Agents

Disclaimer: Information presented in this database is not meant as a substitute for professional judgment. You should consult your healthcare provider for breastfeeding advice related to your particular situation. The U.S. government does not warrant or assume any liability or responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of the information on this Site.

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Attribution Statement: LactMed is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Bookshelf ID: NBK501603PMID: 30000664


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