Is COVID-19 in Breast Milk? U of M Researchers Will Soon Know

The decision to breastfeed is a personal one, but previous research has shown that breastfeeding comes with multiple benefits such as improved health outcomes and reduced health risks. Even so, research has also shown that breastfeeding could lead to the transmission of certain diseases if the breastfeeder is a carrier. Research on COVID-19 has yet to analyze whether the virus can be transmitted through breast milk. 

Erin Osterholm, MD, Assistant Professor for the Department of Pediatrics is looking to analyze this correlation within her own research to address any concerns revolving around COVID-19 transmission through breast milk. With the assistance of Mark Schleiss, MD, Professor for the Department of Pediatrics, and the support of the CO:VID (Creative Outcomes: Visionary Innovation & Discovery) grant, they lead a study looking at the risk newborns face when breastfeeding during the COVID-19 pandemic. COVID will be tested for in maternal breast milk samples and infant serum samples regularly collected for newborn screenings.

With this information, Dr. Osterholm and Dr. Schleiss hope to reassure mothers and families of their newborns’ safety in these unprecedented times. To read the full article, follow this link.