Reglan, a prescription medication approved to treat certain gastrointestinal disorders, is also sometimes used off label to induce lactation in breastfeeding women with a low milk supply. Several studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of Reglan lactation inducement when the proper dose (30-45 mg/day) is taken. In fact, results may be seen in as little as 3 days.

Reglan Lactation Side Effects

Although Reglan may help increase milk production, it may do so while causing the following side effects in the mother:

  • anxiety
  • depression
  • headaches
  • stomach cramps
  • diarrhea
  • sleepiness

Due to the risk of side effects, many health care providers recommend using Reglan for no more than 10 days to 2 weeks to increase milk supply. To avoid a sudden drop in milk supply when Reglan is discontinued, dosage should be tapered off over the last few days of treatment.

To date, there have been no reports of infants experiencing Reglan side effects from breastfeeding (and indeed, Reglan is sometimes given directly to infants to treat gastroesophageal reflux.) The amount of Reglan that a baby receives through breast milk is minimal in comparison with the dosage given to infants with reflux.

Reglan Tardive Dyskinesia

Chronic use of Reglan has been linked to a drug-induced movement disorder known as tardive dyskinesia. Tardive means delayed and dyskinesia means abnormal movement.Tardive dyskinesia is characterized by involuntary, repetitive movements of the extremities, or lip smacking, grimacing, tongue protrusion, rapid eye movements or blinking, puckering and pursing of the lips, or impaired movement of the fingers.

On February 26, 2009, the FDA announced that it was ordering the manufacturers of Reglan to add a black box warning to their drug labels about the risk of tardive dyskinesia with long-term or high-dose Reglan use. According to the FDA, “the chronic use of metoclopramide therapy should be avoided in all but rare cases where the benefit is believed to outweigh the risk.

Reglan Lactation Lawyer

If you or a loved one has experienced serious Reglan side effects, such as tardive dyskinesia, after taking Reglan, you may be entitled to file a Reglan lawsuit seeking compensation for your medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, and more.

Contact our law firm today for a free and confidential case evaluation by an experienced Reglan lawyer.

Published November 17, 2011 by