Mothers with this disease should continue breast-feeding unless they are experiencing the acute phase, reactivated disease, or bleeding nipples.
Chagas disease (infection by the protozoan Trypanosoma cruzi) is a major parasitic disease of the Americas and one of the main neglected tropical diseases. Although various routes of transmission sre recognized, the risk for transmission of the infection through breast-feeding has not clearly been established. We reviewed the literature on transmission of T. cruzi through breast-feeding to provide breast-feeding mothers with Chagas disease with medical guidance. Although data from animal studies and human studies are scarce, we do not recommend that mothers with Chagas disease discontinue breast-feeding, unless they are experiencing the acute phase of the disease, reactivated disease resulting from immunosuppression, or bleeding nipples. In these cases, thermal treatment of milk before feeding the infant may be considered.