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Advice for breastfeeding mothers after CT contrast injection

Patient information A-Z

On the day of your CT (computed tomography) examination, you will be given an injection of iodine contrast medium (Visipaque, Omnipaque or Niopam). These agents are low risk contrast agents. A very small percentage of the injected dose enters the breast milk but virtually none is absorbed across the gut of the infant. No special precautions are required and you can carry on breastfeeding as normal. This information is from guidance provided by The Royal College of Radiologists.

You should not experience any after‑effects from this procedure and injection, and allergic reactions are very rare. However, should you suspect you or your child are experiencing any allergic reactions, you should attend your local A&E department explaining that you have recently had a CT examination, which involved the intravenous (IV) administration of iodine contrast. Side effects may happen several hours or days after the administration of IV contrast. Allergic reactions may include:

  • Wheeziness, difficulty breathing or chest tightness/ pain.
  • Skin rash, lumps, itchy spots, blisters on skin or in mouth, red/ itchy eyes, cough.
  • Swelling to face and throat.
  • Dizziness or feeling faint (caused by low blood pressure).
  • Severe skin reactions, such reddish target-like spots or circular patches with central blisters.


Once the images obtained from this procedure have been analysed, a full report will be forwarded to the team / consultant who referred you for this procedure. They will discuss the results with you and organise your follow-up appointment.

Contacts / further information

Please contact the CT scanning department on 01223 217426 (Monday to Friday 09:00-17:00) if you would like further information.

We are smoke-free

Smoking is not allowed anywhere on the hospital campus. For advice and support in quitting, contact your GP or the free NHS stop smoking helpline on 0800 169 0 169.

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Help accessing this information in other formats is available. To find out more about the services we provide, please visit our patient information help page (see link below) or telephone 01223 256998.

Contact us

Cambridge University Hospitals
NHS Foundation Trust
Hills Road, Cambridge

Telephone +44 (0)1223 245151