U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

NCBI Bookshelf. A service of the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.

Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed®) [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Institute of Child Health and Human Development; 2006-.

Cover of Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed®)

Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed®) [Internet].

Show details


Last Revision: May 17, 2021.

Estimated reading time: 1 minute

CASRN: 139264-17-8

image 135017989 in the ncbi pubchem database

Drug Levels and Effects

Summary of Use during Lactation

Preliminary evidence indicates that zolmitriptan levels in breastmilk are low. Amounts ingested by the infant are small and unlikely to affect the nursing infant, especially if the infant is older than 2 months. Concurrent use of propranolol might increase the zolmitriptan dose received by the breastfed infant substantially.

Drug Levels

Zolmitriptan is metabolized to the active metabolite, N-desmethylzolmitriptan by CYP1A2 and CYP3A4.

Maternal Levels. Four women who were at least 1 month postpartum used zolmitriptan to treat migraine provided one milk sample before the dose, then additional milk samples at 1, 2, 4, 8, 12 and 24 hours after the dose. One mother used a 5 mg dose by nasal spray. The other 3 mothers took 2.5 mg orally. N-desmethylzolmitriptan was undetectable (<1 nM) in milk. The average peak milk level of 8.2 mcg/L (range 2.5 to 18.1 mcg/L) occurred from 4 to 12 hours after the dose. The average milk level was 4.6 mcg/L (range 1.5 to 10.1 mcg/L) and the half-life in milk averaged 6.5 hours. Their infants’ average daily dosage of zolmitriptan was 0.7 mcg/kg (range 0.2 to 1.5 mcg/kg) and their average weight-adjusted infant dosage was 2.1% (range 0.7 to 5.3%) of the maternal dose. The woman who had the highest average and peak milk levels and the highest relative and absolute infant dosages was taking propranolol concurrently, which is known to increase serum zolmitriptan levels. Excluding this woman, the other three infants’ average daily dosage of zolmitriptan was 0.4 mcg/kg (range 0.2 to 0.6 mcg/kg) and their average weight-adjusted infant dosage was 1% (range 0.7 to 1.4%) of the maternal dose.[1]

Infant Levels. Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

Effects in Breastfed Infants

Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

Effects on Lactation and Breastmilk

Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

Alternate Drugs to Consider

Eletriptan, Rizatriptan, Sumatriptan


Amundsen S, Nordeng H, Fuskevåg OM, et al. Transfer of triptans into human breast milk and estimation of infant drug exposure through breastfeeding. Basic Clin Pharmacol Toxicol. 2021;128:795–804. [PubMed: 33730376]

Substance Identification

Substance Name


CAS Registry Number


Drug Class

Breast Feeding


Serotonin Receptor Agonists

Serotonin 5-HT1 Receptor Agonists


Vasoconstrictor Agents

Disclaimer: Information presented in this database is not meant as a substitute for professional judgment. You should consult your healthcare provider for breastfeeding advice related to your particular situation. The U.S. government does not warrant or assume any liability or responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of the information on this Site.

Copyright Notice

Attribution Statement: LactMed is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Bookshelf ID: NBK501463PMID: 30000523


Related information

Similar articles in PubMed

See reviews...See all...

Recent Activity

Your browsing activity is empty.

Activity recording is turned off.

Turn recording back on

See more...