Handily, the Antibiotic I was given yesterday contains the following message in the advice leaflet:
"The use of this medicine by nursing mothers may lead to sensitisation, diarrhoea, fungal infections (such as thrush) and skin rashes in the infant".
I was so tired yesterday and in so much pain I just swallowed the bloody things as soon as they arrived. Flucloxacillin, 500mg. A high dose.
Reading the leaflet this morning I went totally ballistic, and of course felt very angry with myself for not looking up the antibiotic myself on the net, which I always do, because you never know, sometimes. And there I am thinking "that proves it, doctors are not to be trusted" etc, etc. When I phoned up the emergency docs again I got all the information I needed to make a serious complaint, as well as got an alternative prescription for Amoxycillin, which is now waiting for me at a local chemist.
Sigh of relief? Well. Here goes the net research:
1) Net doctor.co.uk: "This medicine passes into breast milk in small amounts that are unlikely to be harmful to the nursing infant. However, as with all medicines it should be used with caution in breastfeeding mothers, and only if the expected benefit outweighs any possible risk. Seek further medical advice from your doctor."
2) The Breastfeeding Network: Antibiotics safe to take during lactation: Flucloxacillin, Floxapen, 250-500mg four times a day one hour before food.
3) The Lactation Resource centre: Amoxycillin, plain penicillin and other antibiotics are often ineffective for mastitis. If you need an antibiotic, you need one which is effective against Staphylococcus aureus. Effective for this bug are: cephalexin, cefaclor, cloxacillin, flucloxacillin, amoxycillin-clavulinic acid, clindamycin and ciprofloxacin. The last two are effective for mothers allergic to penicillin. You can and should continue breastfeeding with all these medications.
Lessons learned are: well. One lesson learned. Do the bloody research first. By the way, that last link has some stunningly good and by definition stunningly horrible mastitis information in it. Thank GOD there are no pictures.