Chlortetracycline in Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

Risk Factor: D
Class: Anti-infectives / Tetracyclines

Contents of this page:
Fetal Risk Summary
Breast Feeding Summary
Questions and Answers

Fetal Risk Summary

See Tetracycline.

Breast Feeding Summary

Chlortetracycline is excreted into breast milk. Eight patients were given 23 g orally/day for 34 days (1). Average maternal and milk concentrations were 4.1 and 1.25 g/mL, respectively, producing a milk:plasma ratio of 0.4. Infant data were not given.

Theoretically, dental staining and inhibition of bone growth could occur in breast-fed infants whose mothers were consuming chlortetracycline. However, this theoretical possibility seems remote because in infants exposed to a closely related antibiotic, tetracycline, serum levels were undetectable (less than 0.05 g/mL) (2). The American Academy of Pediatrics considers tetracycline to be compatible with breast feeding (3). Three potential problems may exist for the nursing infant, even though there are no reports in this regard: modification of bowel flora, direct effects on the infant, and interference with the interpretation of culture results if a fever workup is required.


  1. Guilbeau JA, Schoenbach EB, Schuab IG, Latham DV. Aureomycin in obstetrics; therapy and prophylaxis. JAMA 1950;143:5206.
  2. Posner AC, Prigot A, Konicoff NG. Further observations on the use of tetracycline hydrochloride in prophylaxis and treatment of obstetric infections. In Antibiotics Annual 195455. New York, NY:Medical Encyclopedia, 1955:5948.
  3. Committee on Drugs, American Academy of Pediatrics. The transfer of drugs and other chemicals into human milk. Pediatrics 1994;93:137150.

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Questions and Answers

Does any antibiotic like tetracycline come in liquid form?, I was just prescribed tetracycline (capsules) but i can not swallow a pill. Does any medication like tetracycline such as
o Tetracycline
o Chlortetracycline
o Oxytetracycline
o Demeclocycline
o Doxycycline
o Lymecycline
o Meclocycline
o Methacycline
o Minocycline
o Rolitetracycline
come as a liquid. I am using it to treat acne.

I believe these all do, however it's far less advisible particularly over the long term because antiobiotics can stain teeth. The liquid is mainly for the kiddies. You can get shots too.