Last update Oct. 6, 2023


Very Low Risk

Safe. Compatible. Minimal risk for breastfeeding and infant.

Permethrin is a pyrethroid insecticide. It is used in the treatment of head lice, pubic lice and in the treatment and prevention of scabies. Topical cutaneous application.

Permethrin is also used in veterinary medicine and as an agricultural, horticultural and domestic insecticide and disinsecticide of premises,  and as an insecticide of mosquitoes, flies and larvae in the control of malaria, onchocerciasis and tsetse flies.

Permethrin is found in milk samples from women in regions where it is widely used for agricultural or malaria control purposes. However, the limits are below those permitted by WHO. (Pedersen 2021, Feo 2012, Corcellas 2012, Weldon 2011, Sereda 2009, Bouwman 2009 & 2006, Zehringer 2001)

Absorption through the skin is negligible. (Butler 2014)

No problems have been observed in infants whose mothers used permethrin. (Ito 1993)

Authorized use in young infants. (Salavastru 2017)

Expert authors consider it safe during lactation (Workowski 2021, Salavastru 2017, Butler 2014, Leachman 2006, Porto 2003). WHO 2002 essential medicines list: compatible with breastfeeding. (WHO 2002)

Permethrin is considered the treatment of choice for scabies in nursing mothers. (CDC 2002)

Do not apply to the breast or clean thoroughly before breastfeeding. Keep hair short or tied back so that the infant cannot suck on it.

See below the information of these related products:

  • Pyrethrin ( Safe. Compatible. Minimal risk for breastfeeding and infant.)
  • Scabies ( Safe. Compatible. Minimal risk for breastfeeding and infant.)


We do not have alternatives for P03AC01 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

P03AC01 is Permethrin in ATC Code/s.

Is written in other languages:


P03AC01 belongs to this group or family:


Main tradenames from several countries containing P03AC01 in its composition:


Variable Value Unit
Oral Bioavail. Dermat: < 2 %
Molecular weight 391 daltons


  1. Pedersen TL, Smilowitz JT, Winter CK, Emami S, Schmidt RJ, Bennett DH, Hertz-Picciotto I, Taha AY. Quantification of Nonpersistent Pesticides in Small Volumes of Human Breast Milk with Ultrahigh Performance Liquid Chromatography Coupled to Tandem Mass Spectrometry. J Agric Food Chem. 2021 Jun 16;69(23):6676-6689. Abstract Full text (link to original source)
  2. Workowski KA, Bachmann LH, Chan PA, Johnston CM, Muzny CA, Park I, Reno H, Zenilman JM, Bolan GA. Sexually Transmitted Infections Treatment Guidelines, 2021. MMWR Recomm Rep. 2021 Jul 23;70(4):1-187. Abstract Full text (link to original source)
  3. Salavastru CM, Chosidow O, Boffa MJ, Janier M, Tiplica GS. European guideline for the management of scabies. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2017 Aug;31(8):1248-1253. Abstract
  4. Butler DC, Heller MM, Murase JE. Safety of dermatologic medications in pregnancy and lactation: Part II. Lactation. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2014 Mar;70(3):417.e1-10; quiz 427. Abstract
  5. Corcellas C, Feo ML, Torres JP, Malm O, Ocampo-Duque W, Eljarrat E, Barceló D. Pyrethroids in human breast milk: occurrence and nursing daily intake estimation. Environ Int. 2012 Oct 15;47:17-22. Abstract
  6. Feo ML, Eljarrat E, Manaca MN, Dobaño C, Barcelo D, Sunyer J, Alonso PL, Menendez C, Grimalt JO. Pyrethroid use-malaria control and individual applications by households for other pests and home garden use. Environ Int. 2012 Jan;38(1):67-72. Abstract
  7. Weldon RH, Barr DB, Trujillo C, Bradman A, Holland N, Eskenazi B. A pilot study of pesticides and PCBs in the breast milk of women residing in urban and agricultural communities of California. J Environ Monit. 2011 Abstract
  8. Pérez JL, Carranza C, Mateos F. Antiparasitarios. Revisión de los fármacos útiles en el tratamiento de parasitosis clásicas y emergentes. \ [Antiparasitic drugs. Review of the useful drugs in the treatment of classic and emergent parasitic diseases]. Rev Esp Quimioter. 2009 Jun;22(2):93-105. Review. Spanish. Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  9. Bouwman H, Kylin H. Malaria control insecticide residues in breast milk: the need to consider infant health risks. Environ Health Perspect. 2009 Oct;117(10):1477-80. Abstract
  10. Sereda B, Bouwman H, Kylin H. Comparing water, bovine milk, and indoor residual spraying as possible sources of DDT and pyrethroid residues in breast milk. J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2009;72(13):842-51. Abstract
  11. Bouwman H, Sereda B, Meinhardt HM. Simultaneous presence of DDT and pyrethroid residues in human breast milk from a malaria endemic area in South Africa. Environ Pollut. 2006 Abstract
  12. Leachman SA, Reed BR. The use of dermatologic drugs in pregnancy and lactation. Dermatol Clin. 2006 Abstract
  13. Porto I. Antiparasitic drugs and lactation: focus on anthelmintics, scabicides, and pediculicides. J Hum Lact. 2003 Abstract
  14. CDC. Sexually transmitted diseases treatment guidelines 2002. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. MMWR Recomm Rep. 2002 Abstract Full text (link to original source)
  15. WHO / UNICEF. BREASTFEEDING AND MATERNAL MEDICATION Recommendations for Drugs in the Eleventh WHO Model List of Essential Drugs. Department of Child and Adolescent Health and Development (WHO/UNICEF) 2002 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)

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