Sexual and reproductive health

Technical consultation on hormonal contraception use during lactation and effects on the newborn

Summary report

World Health Organization, Department of Reproductive Health and Research

Front cover

Publication details

Number of pages: 20
Publication date: 2010
Languages: English
WHO reference number: WHO/RHR/10.05 - Web only


A technical consultation evaluating the effect of hormonal contraception use in the first six weeks postpartum by lactating women on their newborn children was convened at WHO Headquarters, Geneva, 22 October 2008. The consultation brought together the Guidelines Steering Group, other experts on hormonal contraception, experts on steroidal hormones and experts in neonatal development and care, to evaluate all available scientific data in this area.

Review of evidence:

  • Hormonal contraceptive use during breastfeeding and its effects on the neonate
  • Neonatal metabolism of exogenous substances
  • Effects of estrogenic steroids on the developing brain
  • Effects of progesterone steroids on the developing brain