Research Article

Sulpiride improves inadequate lactation.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1982; 285 doi: (Published 24 July 1982) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1982;285:249
  1. O Ylikorkala,
  2. A Kauppila,
  3. S Kivinen,
  4. L Viinikka


    Twenty-eight newly delivered mothers with inadequate lactation volunteered for a placebo-controlled double-blind trial of sulpiride 50 mg thrice daily for four weeks. Treatment was allocated at random, and serum prolactin concentrations and breast-milk yields were measured before and serially during the trial. Of the 26 women who completed the trial, 14 had taken sulpiride and 12 the placebo. In the sulpiride-treatment group the mean maternal serum prolactin concentration rose from 49.0 +/- SE 3.6 micrograms/l to a maximum of 402.1 +/0 43.2 micrograms/l at two weeks; in the placebo-treated group, however, the concentration fell during the trial (from 84.7 +/- 24.0 micrograms/l to 47.8 +/- 8.6 micrograms/l). Mean breast-milk yields also increased in the sulpiride-treatment group (by an average of 212-265 ml) and fell in the women given placebo. Of the 14 infants in the sulpiride-treatment group, four did not need supplementary feeds during the trial; in the control group, however, all infants continued to require such feeds. Infants in the sulpiride-treatment group gained significantly more weight than did the controls (p less than 0.05). Three women taking sulpiride complained of mild side effects, but none occurred in the infants. These findings suggest that sulpiride is an effective treatment for inadequate lactation in the puerperium.