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Enbrel Does the Trick After Post-Partum Flare-up
from Nancy M.

Hi Ed:  I've been looking through your website and it is very helpful.

I have had P for 20 years, and during both of my pregnancies (one this past year, one in 1999) I had remission with almost no symptoms at all. This time around, I just fell apart at about 8 weeks post-partum, with a major flare across my arms and legs, scalp and even face. I also developed Psoriatic Arthritis quite badly, and very quickly. I attribute all of this to the influx of hormones after childbirth, and possibly the added hormonal imbalance of breastfeeding.

Anyway, I started Enbrel 10 injections ago. So far my scalp is pretty much clear, and my lesions have lessened. My flaking is gone, and redness has diminished. 

I want to give hope to those mothers who are breastfeeding and want to use Enbrel. I did some research with my Pediatrician and the leading breastfeeding research PhD (Dr. David Hale) determined it doesn't pass through breast milk. However, the pharmaceutical company won't ever give that the OK. Too much risk.

Anyway, thanks again for your website. I just found it and love it!  - Nancy


Ed’s Response:  Glad you’ve found FlakeHQ fun and useful.  It is contributors like you who make it so!  You are the second writer this month to bring up Enbrel in association with pregnancy/motherhood (see Christy D.’s Resident Astronomer’s Pregnancy & Enbrel Dilemma). 

Here’s what the official Prescribing Information about Enbrel has to say about nursing:

It is not known whether ENBREL is excreted in human milk or absorbed systemically after ingestion.  Because many drugs and immunoglobulins are excreted in human milk, and because of the potential for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants from ENBREL, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or to discontinue the drug.

If I understand you correctly, Nancy , you’re saying research (Dr. Hale’s) shows Enbrel does not pass through breast milk.  Christy D. and her biochemist acquaintance determined “the Enbrel molecule is too big to transfer into breast milk and would be destroyed by the baby’s digestive system even if it did."  Both your findings would make this prescribing caution out-of-date. 

I’m going to make some further inquiries about this.  Thanks for sharing, Nancy !  -Ed

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