Transfer of Parecoxib and Its Primary Active Metabolite Valdecoxib via Transitional Breastmilk Following Intravenous Parecoxib Use After Cesarean Delivery: A Comparison of Naïve Pooled Data Analysis and Nonlinear Mixed-Effects Modeling

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Multimodal analgesia, including nonopioid analgesics, is usually used for several days after cesarean delivery. Because the breastfed infant receives transitional milk during this same period, it is important to know how much of a maternal analgesic drug is received by the infant. We designed this study to estimate infant exposure to parecoxib and its active metabolite valdecoxib (a cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitor) after a single IV maternal dose of parecoxib after cesarean delivery.


Forty women and their infants participated in the study. Parecoxib (40 mg) was administered IV at a mean of 41 hours after birth. Milk (4 samples) and plasma (1 sample) were collected from the women over the subsequent 24 hours and drug content was measured by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. The infants were assessed the day after parecoxib dosing. Absolute (AID) and relative infant doses (RID) of both parecoxib and valdecoxib through milk were estimated by standard methods using the naïve pooled datasets, and where possible milk/plasma (M/P) concentration ratios were calculated. Nonlinear mixed-effects modeling was also used to fit the valdecoxib milk and plasma datasets to a compartmental model and to predict M/P, AID, and RID.


M/P ratios (median [interquartile range; IQR]) were 0.5 (0.15 to 1.15) for parecoxib and 0.14 (0.11 to 0.18) for valdecoxib. Using the naïve pooled datasets, AID (drug concentration in milk×daily milk intake/kg) was 0.24 (0.05 to 1.85) μg/kg/day for parecoxib, and 1.82 (1.12 to 2.73) μg/kg/day, for valdecoxib. RID was 0.04 (0.01 to 0.43) % of the weight-adjusted maternal dose (one dose in 24 hours) for parecoxib and 0.47 (0.29 to 0.69) % for valdecoxib (as parecoxib equivalents). Compartmental modeling of valdecoxib alone produced a mean (interindividual variability) M/P of 0.149 (26%), median (IQR) AID of 1.47 (0.96 to 2.03) μg/kg/day, and median (IQR) RID of 0.39 (0.28 to 0.47) %. Neonatal neurologic and adaptive capacity scores (mean=34, 95% CI 33 to 35) were consistent with a normal expected score of 35.


Both the naïve pooling of data and the modeling analyses gave similar results. The RID of both parecoxib and valdecoxib was low. We conclude that a single 40 mg IV dose of the cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitor parecoxib administered to lactating women after cesarean delivery is unlikely to cause adverse effects in breastfed infants.

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