Last update Jan. 25, 2022
A tricyclic antidepressant dibenzoxepine with actions and uses similar to amitriptyline with major antihistaminic, antimuscarinic and sedative properties. Due to its potent H1 and H2 antihistamine action, it is used in the treatment of moderate to severe pruritus of atopic dermatitis and other pruritic conditions (Valeant 2013). Topical application 3 to 4 times a day no more than 8 days in a row.
Since the last update we have not found published data on its excretion in breastmilk via application to the skin.
After cutaneous administration, plasma concentrations can range from undetectable to 47 micrograms (mcg)/Litre. The therapeutic levels for treating a depressive state orally are from 30 to 150 mcg/L.(Valeant 2013)
Sedation may occur when applied to more than 10% of the body surface (Valeant 2013). With other types of dermatological preparation (oil/water nanoemulsions), much lower plasma levels of 0.29 mcg/L are reached (Sandig 2013), where there would be no possibility of systemic effects.
Sedation has occurred in infants (under two months) whose mothers were taking doxepin orally. (Frey 1999, Matheson 1985)
Until there is more published data on this drug in relation to breastfeeding, safer known alternatives may be preferable, especially during the neonatal period and in case of prematurity.
If used during breastfeeding, do not apply on the breast in order to prevent the infant from ingesting it; do not apply over large areas (maximum 10% of body surface) or for prolonged periods (maximum 8 days) to minimize systemic absorption.
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.
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