Last update Aug. 30, 2018


Very Low Risk

Safe. Compatible. Minimal risk for breastfeeding and infant.

A high molecular weight resin-polymer that decreases the intestinal absorption of bile acids and cholesterol.
Oral administration twice a day.

Since the last update we have not found data published in relation to breastfeeding.

The intestinal absorption of the drug is zero (AEMPS 2013, New Zealand Data Sheet 2010), so it can not transfer to breastmilk, nor to the infant’s plasma via breastmilk. Its high molecular weight makes it unlikely that it will transfer into breastmilk in significant amounts.

It is unlikely that it can alter the lipid composition of milk. Infants need to ingest large amounts of cholesterol, as it is essential for the proper development of the nervous system, cell membranes and is a precursor of several hormones and vitamins.

Prolonged use can cause plasma deficiency, due to lack of absorption of fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K) so it may be advisable to supplement to avoid deficiency of these vitamins in breastmilk.

Various medical associations, experts and expert consensus consider the use of this medication safe during breastfeeding (Hale 2017 p195, Lawrence 2016 p393, Serrano 2015, Briggs 2015, Heetun 2007, Mahadevan 2006).

It is advisable to follow a lipid-lowering diet.
Halting the pharmacological treatment of hypercholesterolemia during the period of breastfeeding is not likely to significantly alter the long-term outcome of the disease.


We do not have alternatives for Colestyramine since it is relatively safe.

Suggestions made at e-lactancia are done by APILAM team of health professionals, and are based on updated scientific publications. It is not intended to replace the relationship you have with your doctor but to compound it. The pharmaceutical industry contraindicates breastfeeding, mistakenly and without scientific reasons, in most of the drug data sheets.

Jose Maria Paricio, Founder & President of APILAM/e-Lactancia

Your contribution is essential for this service to continue to exist. We need the generosity of people like you who believe in the benefits of breastfeeding.

Thank you for helping to protect and promote breastfeeding.

José María Paricio, founder of e-lactancia.

Other names

Colestyramine is also known as

Colestyramine in other languages or writings:


Colestyramine belongs to this group or family:


Main tradenames from several countries containing Colestyramine in its composition:


Variable Value Unit
Oral Bioavail. 0 %
Molecular weight > 1.000.000 daltons


  1. Hale TW, Rowe HE. Medications & Mothers' Milk. A Manual of Lactation Pharmacology. Springer Publishing Company. 2017
  2. Lawrence RA, Lawrence RM. Breastfeeding. A guide for the medical profession. Eighth Edition. Philadelphia: Elsevier; 2016
  3. Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Towers CV, Forinash AB. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation: A Reference Guide to Fetal and Neonatal Risk. Wolters Kluwer Health. Tenth edition (acces on line) 2015
  4. Serrano Aguayo P, García de Quirós Muñoz JM, Bretón Lesmes I, Cózar León MV. Tratamiento de enfermedades endocrinológicas durante la lactancia. [Endocrinologic diseases management during breastfeeding.] Med Clin (Barc). 2015 Jan 20;144(2):73-9. Abstract
  5. AEMPS. Colestiramina. Ficha técnica. 2013 Full text (in our servers)
  6. New Zealand Data Sheet Cholestyramine Drug Summary 2010 Full text (in our servers)
  7. Heetun ZS, Byrnes C, Neary P, O'Morain C. Review article: Reproduction in the patient with inflammatory bowel disease. Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2007 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  8. Mahadevan U, Kane S. American gastroenterological association institute technical review on the use of gastrointestinal medications in pregnancy. Gastroenterology. 2006 Jul;131(1):283-311. Review. Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)

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e-lactancia is a resource recommended by Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine - 2012 of United States of America

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