Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Breastfeeding While Taking Seizure Medicine Does Not Appear To Harm Children, Study Suggests

Date:
April 22, 2008
Source:
American Academy of Neurology
Summary:
A first of its kind study finds breastfeeding while taking certain seizure medications does not appear to harm a child's cognitive development. Researchers tested the cognitive development of 187 two-year-old children whose mothers were taking the epilepsy drugs lamotrigine, carbamazepine, phenytoin, or valproate. Forty-one percent of the children were breastfed.

A first of its kind study finds breastfeeding while taking certain seizure medications does not appear to harm a child's cognitive development.

Related Articles


"Our early findings show breastfeeding during anti-epilepsy drug treatment doesn't appear to have a negative impact on a child's cognitive abilities," said study author Kimford Meador, MD, with the University of Florida at Gainesville, and Fellow of the American Academy of Neurology. "However, more research is needed to confirm our findings and women should use caution due to the limitations of our study."

Researchers tested the cognitive development of 187 two-year-old children whose mothers were taking the epilepsy drugs lamotrigine, carbamazepine, phenytoin, or valproate. Forty-one percent of the children were breastfed.

The study found breastfed children had higher cognitive test scores than those children who were not breastfed, and this trend was consistent for each anti-epilepsy drug. The children who were breastfed received an average test score of 98.1 compared to a score of 89.5 for the children not breastfed. However, the results were not significant after adjusting for the mother's IQ. Thus, it appears that the higher scores in children who were breastfed is due to the fact that their mothers had higher IQs.

Meador says animal studies have shown that some anti-epilepsy drugs, but not all, can cause cells to die in immature brains, but this effect can be blocked by the protective effects of beta estradiol, which is the mother's sex hormone. "Since the potential protective effects of beta estradiol in utero are absent after birth, concern was raised that breastfeeding by women taking anti-epilepsy drugs may increase the risk of anti-epilepsy drug-induced cell death and result in reduced cognitive outcomes in children."

Meador says additional research on the effects of breastfeeding should be extended to other anti-epilepsy drugs and mothers who use more than one anti-epilepsy medication.

The study is part of an ongoing study of the long-term effects of in utero anti-epilepsy drug exposure on children's cognition. Women with epilepsy who were taking anti-epilepsy drugs were enrolled in the study during pregnancy. Ultimately, the study will examine the effects of in utero anti-epilepsy drug exposure on children at six years old.

This research was presented at the upcoming American Academy of Neurology 60th Anniversary Annual Meeting in Chicago, April 17, 2008.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Academy of Neurology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Academy of Neurology. "Breastfeeding While Taking Seizure Medicine Does Not Appear To Harm Children, Study Suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 April 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080417145752.htm>.
American Academy of Neurology. (2008, April 22). Breastfeeding While Taking Seizure Medicine Does Not Appear To Harm Children, Study Suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080417145752.htm
American Academy of Neurology. "Breastfeeding While Taking Seizure Medicine Does Not Appear To Harm Children, Study Suggests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080417145752.htm (accessed December 22, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, December 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Christmas Kissing Good for Health

Christmas Kissing Good for Health

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 22, 2014) Scientists in Amsterdam say couples transfer tens of millions of microbes when they kiss, encouraging healthy exposure to bacteria. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Brain-Dwelling Tapeworm Reveals Genetic Secrets

Brain-Dwelling Tapeworm Reveals Genetic Secrets

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 22, 2014) Cambridge scientists have unravelled the genetic code of a rare tapeworm that lived inside a patient's brain for at least four year. Researchers hope it will present new opportunities to diagnose and treat this invasive parasite. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Touch-Free Smart Phone Empowers Mobility-Impaired

Touch-Free Smart Phone Empowers Mobility-Impaired

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) A touch-free phone developed in Israel enables the mobility-impaired to operate smart phones with just a movement of the head. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) Polish scientists isolate bacteria from earthworm intestines which they say may be used in antibiotics and cancer treatments. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins