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breastfeeding and citalopram,im in bits,please help.

(36 Posts)
FriggFRIGG Thu 04-Aug-11 17:10:44

im just back from a drs app,
she prescribed citalopram,and told me id have to stop BFing.
im so upset,i dont want to give up,its breaking my heart having to choose between feeling like this OR breastfeeding.

My DS is a milk monster,and fed on cue,he's 11 months old.
he would be so upset and confused if i suddenly started refusing him.

i asked if there was anything i could take whilst BFing and she just said that citalopram was what she used,and that she knew it worked.
she said i could half my dose to 10mg for the first week and feed him once in the morning and once in the evening,but after this week id 'just have to push him away' sad
i just cant do this to him.i dont know what to do.


EauRouge Thu 04-Aug-11 17:17:19

You poor thing sad Don't panic, I'm not sure your doctor is right. Breastfeeding network are really good with this kind of thing. They have an information sheet here with some info on Citalopram. They also have a Drugs in Milk helpline, I would give them a ring and see what they say. The number is 0844 412 4665

tiktok Thu 04-Aug-11 17:19:55

sad sad Frigg, please, please go back to the doc and this time share this info with her:

Search citalopram on this respected medical website and you will see that citalopram is not an indication to stop bf.

You can also check here and call the helpline phone no - and you will find that there are alternatives which are safe, if you really feel you cannot use the citalopram.

NO NEED TO STOP bf, and NO NEED TO AVOID MEDS, I promise you smile

FriggFRIGG Thu 04-Aug-11 17:20:09

i'll look at that now.
my DD self weaned,and i want DS too as well,i cant imagine not allowing him to feed when we both know there is milk there.

TBH the dr was pretty awful. i really hope she is wrong.

Cosmosis Thu 04-Aug-11 17:20:37

If you really can't take citalopram while bfing (and I agree with Eaurouge you need to ring the helpline) then you need to go back to the docs and ask for a diferent medication, I am certain there are anti-ds you can take while bfing. Stopping bfing when you don't want to will probably undo most of the good the citalopram would do anyway.

So sorry you are feeling like this, it will get better I promise (been on citalopram myself, was on it when I got pg in fact).

FriggFRIGG Thu 04-Aug-11 17:21:01

thankyou tiktoc thankyou thankyou thankyou!

FriggFRIGG Thu 04-Aug-11 17:21:43

thankyou cosmo,i will call.

Albrecht Thu 04-Aug-11 17:29:00

Gosh I can't see how having to do that is going to help you to feel better. Please please check it out with someone who knows about breastfeeding. Its actually very rare that you have to stop eg chemo drugs. What I've heard is that drug companies are very risk adverse so will advise against it just in case of being sued.

WoTmania Thu 04-Aug-11 18:02:15

Check out the website. Dr needs some real re-training. If you're depressed the last thing you need is this sort of bad advice and pressure. I hope your situation gets resolved.

BettyBum Thu 04-Aug-11 18:55:40

I work in mental health. How bloody unhelpful your doc is angry

We use sertraline the most but I def second others advice to ring the drugs in breastfeeding helpline.

Best wishes.

knittakid Thu 04-Aug-11 21:54:27

Frigg, I'd be interested in hearing what happened. I was prescribed paroxetine just yesterday but reading about it feel really uneasy about taking it. Did you call that helpline?
Best wishes.

FriggFRIGG Thu 04-Aug-11 22:13:32

hi,knitta,no i havent called yet,DD was a little difficult tonight,but im going to call tomorrow afternoon.
having read a bit tonight though,it seems that citalopram should be fine,but there are alternatives that have an even smaller risk.

i certainly WONT be stopping BFing.

so,now im just really angry at the dr,she made me feel so awful,like i had no choice in the matter.
one of my biggest anxiety's is going to the frigging doctors exactly because of these kind of doctors.she really compounded my fear.

i hope you find something on paroxitine that helps,did your DR know you are BFing?

Twunk Thu 04-Aug-11 22:18:29

I'm breastfeeding (2 years and counting) and was given paroxetine (seroxat). What an absolutely shit doctor, am gobsmacked at the advice you've been given to be frank.

Twunk Thu 04-Aug-11 22:19:48

Paroxetine is fine btw, have been on it 18 months now, so since DS 2 was 6 months.

FriggFRIGG Thu 04-Aug-11 22:24:55

thankyou twunk,maybe i should explicitly ask for paroxetine then??
its for generalised anxiety and depression/PND (?) she's not sure apparently...

i wont be going back to that particular GP anyway,hopefully another will be better!
DP wants to file a complaint....but i think id have to switch surgerys if i did that!

Mampig Thu 04-Aug-11 22:24:56

If your GP won't play ball, can u see another one??? I too work in mental health and suggest that if u are having problems getting a different prescription (if u decide not to take citalopram), you should demand strongly request referral to consultant psychiatrist who would be happy to prescribe an alternative. Where I work, all post-natal mums with baby under 1 year old, get seen within 2 weeks as it is deemed urgent. Continue to bf, and don't cave in to this unreasonable pressure!!

FriggFRIGG Thu 04-Aug-11 22:28:31

i dont have a gp,no one gets given a particular doctor,you just get who your given,or ask i'll ask for someone else!!

can i really ask for a consultant?
im in hampshire.
i got put on a referral list for CBT last week,but the gp i saw today took me off it confused

WishIWasRimaHorton Thu 04-Aug-11 22:29:04

i was prescribed lofepramine while BF DS and DD as that was considered, by my GP, to be the 'safest' while BF. is a slightly nastier drug than some of the more modern ones as is tri-cyclic, but did get me out of the rut.

definitely try and see another GP. honestly - that is very very shocking.

FriggFRIGG Thu 04-Aug-11 22:36:58

its nice to hear,as i was sat there,i was thinking 'this doesnt sound right' but i have massive panickattacks in stressful situations,and i could barely see straight,let alone argue my point,i just burst into tears when she told me to 'push him away'.i said,is there something else i can take thats better for BFing,she just said "well,citalopram is what I prescribe to everyone" and printed of the form.

just to add salt to the wound i went to pick it up from the chemist,who said i had to pay,i said i didnt have any money,and she huffed at me and looked like thishmm

it was only once i got home i realised i get free prescriptions (baby under 12 months)

thank goodness for mumsnet,
and all you lovely people,i would still be in pieces,trying to decide between my mental health and BFing my baby boy,if it wasnt for you guys,
thankyou all so much.

TruthSweet Thu 04-Aug-11 23:18:29

I'm so sorry Frigg. That is shit care to be honest. Not all drugs work for all people, what happens if the citalopram interacted with another drug you HAD to take (say a anti-narcoleptic or heart meds) would she still prescribe it as that's the drug she always does? If it was truely contra-indicated (not just in her head that is) then she would just have to find another drug to give you, surely, not insist that you stop bfing.

I've been on Sertraline for PND-OCD/bog-standard OCD since Dec 06 and whilst I would defy anyone to say my 3 DDs are fine (asthma, ezcema, allergies, arthritis to name but a few of the illnesses they have.....) they have never had any side effects from the meds I take (anti-epileptic too!).

Definitely speak to Wendy Jones (BfN Drugs in BM helpline pharmacist/BFC) to put your mind at rest. She's fab BTW.

If you ever need a chat please feel free to PM me. I've been there done that about Dr being arses about bfing.

FriggFRIGG Thu 04-Aug-11 23:22:05

thankyou truthsweet,that is kind of yousmile

Mampig Thu 04-Aug-11 23:50:13

In answer to your question, yes you can ask for consultant referral if you are not happy, but a different GP would be you're first port of call. As for removing you from CBT list, that's disgraceful!! You suffer anxiety and panic attacks and CBT is an excellent therapy/treatment for this type of disorder. In fact it can be used on its own without medication!! Sometimes the medical professions turn to medication too quick!!! There is a website that does an online CBT therapy that would get you started if you want to have a look = I recommend it all the time and its recognised by mental health professionals and the Trust I work in. You could also be referred to you're local mental health team, who may run anxiety management sessions regularly. If you don't ask, you may not get!! That GP sounds very old fashioned - I'd avoid in future, and also you have the right to ask for a certain GP within a practice, though you'll find that the good ones are usually welll booked up in advance. So long as its not urgent and you don't mind waiting a few days!! My own GP is booked over a week in advance, but he's worth waiting for!!!

FriggFRIGG Fri 05-Aug-11 00:09:02

it was through the mental health team that i was going to be referred for CBT,but the dr said she had taken me off the referral list,so i wont get to speak to the mental health team at all.
im so scared to book another app now as im worried i'll get another dr like this one.
the first dr i saw (last week)was lovely but she left the surgery this week.
im upset and intimidated ridiculously easily these days.
i put this off for 3 years because i was worried about exactly this sort of crap.

Pishwife Fri 05-Aug-11 00:23:11

Hi friggfrigg, I had PND which went undiagnosed for 2 years after dc1. Promised myself I would see GP at the first small sign with DC2. When babe was 16 weeks I told my very well-informed GP that I had spotted some warning signs.

We talked it over and agreed 10mg of Citalopram. He did suggest Sertraline, but I felt I would feel less anxious taking an anti-d I was familiar with (had it for 6 months after miscarriage yonks ago) and he took that into account.

Small amount is found in breastmilk, but no research to indicate any problems for baby.

DC2 went onto bottles when he was nearly 11 months, which was the right time for us. I was off the Citalopram by then, had avoided PND, and enjoyed many months of proudly breastfeeding on demand and felt great about it.

DC2 is almost 2 and no problems at all.

Well done for seeking help, you sound like a wonderful parent smile

Pishwife Fri 05-Aug-11 00:27:44

meant to add... Please do ask to see a different GP. You can also ask to be referred to mental health team. It is so hard when your confidence is shaken, but I urge you to gather up your courage again and go back. Perhaps you could take someone to the appointment with you?

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