Breastfeeding Guidelines following Radiopharmaceuticals

An article in the European Journal of Nuclear Medicine combined data on the radioactivity secreted in breast milk for most nuclear medicine procedures. Recommendation were made for the interruption of breastfeeding in patients having a nuclear medicine investigation. These are summarized here:

  1. Breastfeeding should be noted in the patient history from the attending physician.
  2. The nuclear medicine technologist should ask about the patient’s breastfeeding status and notify the nuclear physician when a patient is breastfeeding.
  3. Breastfeeding should be interrupted for the time radioactivity is known at appear in breast milk.
  4. Close contact with an infant should be restricted to 5 hours in 24 hours for Tc-99m MIBI, Tc-99m labeled RBCs and I-131 (>3mCi) whether or not the mother is breastfeeding.

Radiopharmaceutical Recommendation

Tc-99m labeled DMSA, MDP, HDP, DISIDA, SC, MIBI, and Gluceptate, & In-111 WBC  Interruption of 4 hours
Tc-99m labeled MAA, PYP, DTPA, and RBCs  Interruption of 12 hours
99mTcO4-, I-123, I-131 hippurate  Interruption of 24 hours
T1-201, Ga-67, I-131  Breastfeeding Contraindicated



Harding LK, Bossuyt A, Pellet S, Reiners C, Talbot JN. “Recommendations for nuclear medicine physicians regarding breastfeeding mothers.” European J Nucl Med.1995; 22:BP.