Last update Sept. 22, 2017
Gemfibrozil, like other fibrates, decreases elevated blood lipids (triglycerides and cholesterol) by increasing the activity of lipases that catabolize triglyceride-rich lipoproteins and slightly decreasing cholesterol biosynthesis (AEMPS 2017, Ascent 2011, Miller 1998).
In general, fibrates have a discrete effect on the increase of high density lipoprotein (HDL) concentration and the reduction of low density lipoprotein (LDL).
Since the last update we have not found published data in relation to breastfeeding.
Its high binding to plasma proteins makes it unlikely it will pass into breast milk.
Cholesterol levels in milk are very stable even in hypercholesterolemic women and are not severely affected by diet or nutritional status of the mother, suggesting that 3 is synthesized, at least in part, in the mammary gland (Lawrence 2016, p 289-90).
It is not probable therefore, but it is not known if the fibrates are able to alter the lipid composition of the milk.
Infants need to ingest large amounts of cholesterol, as it is critical to the proper development of the nervous system, cell membranes and is a precursor of several hormones and vitamins.
Until there is more data in relation to breastfeeding, it is prudent to avoid using it, at least while breastfeeding exclusively.
Suspending the pharmacological treatment of hyperlipidemia during breastfeeding is not likely to alter the long-term outcome of the disease, especially when breastfeeding can be considered therapeutic (Lawrence 2016, p.393).
It is advisable to follow a lipid-lowering diet.
In case of administering a fibrate during breastfeeding it is advisable to choose those with a shorter half-life: bezafibrate, gemfibrozil.
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.
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.
e-lactancia is a resource recommended by Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine - 2012 of United States of America
Would you like to recommend the use of e-lactancia? Write to us at corporate mail of APILAM