Last update: Jan. 4, 2020

Ergot Fungus

Very High Risk for breastfeeding

Very unsafe. Contraindicated.
Use of an alternative or cessation of breastfeeding.

A parasitic fungus from the ear of some cereals, particularly rye, which since ancient times has caused epidemics of a serious disease, ergotism (Florea 2017, Belser 2013, Lee 2009).

It has a complex composition, highlighting the ergoline alkaloids: lysergic acid amides such as ergometrine and ergopeptines such as ergotamine and ergotoxine (Florea 2017, Hulvová 2013) that act on adrenergic, dopaminergic and serotonergic receptors.

Since the last update, we have not found published data on its excretion in breast milk.

Ergot alkaloids have oxytocic, vasoconstrictive and lactation-inhibiting effects by inhibiting prolactin, among many others (Florea 2017, Hulvová 2013, Lee 2010, Lee 2009).

Indications from the German Ministry of Health’s Commission E: none.

Due to its serious adverse reactions and toxicity, natural alkaloids are not used in therapy, and there are recommendations for their withdrawal from sale (EMA 2014).
Withdrawal or restricted from the market in Spain (MSC 2004).

At present, semisynthetic derivatives such as methylergometrine, dihydroergotamine, dihydroergocristine, bromocriptine and lisuride are used, among others.

See below the information of these related products:


We do not have alternatives for Ergot Fungus.

Suggestions made at e-lactancia are done by APILAM´s pediatricians and pharmacists, and are based on updated scientific publications.
It is not intended to replace the relationship you have with your doctor but to compound it.

Jose Maria Paricio, Founder & President of APILAM/e-Lactancia

Your contribution is essential for this service to continue to exist. We need the generosity of people like you who believe in the benefits of breastfeeding.

Thank you for helping to protect and promote breastfeeding.

José María Paricio, founder of e-lactancia.

Other names

Ergot Fungus is also known as

Ergot Fungus in other languages or writings:


Ergot Fungus belongs to this group or family:


  1. Vanaclocha B, Cañigueral S. 1992- 2021. Disponible en: Abstract
  2. Florea S, Panaccione DG, Schardl CL. Ergot Alkaloids of the Family Clavicipitaceae. Phytopathology. 2017 Abstract
  3. EMA Restricciones de uso de los medicamentos que contienen derivados ergóticos. Comité de Medicamentos de Uso Humano (CHMP). 2014 Full text (in our servers)
  4. EMA. Restrictions on use of medicines containing ergot derivatives. Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP). 2014 Full text (in our servers)
  5. Hulvová H, Galuszka P, Frébortová J, Frébort I. Parasitic fungus Claviceps as a source for biotechnological production of ergot alkaloids. Biotechnol Adv. 2013 Abstract
  6. Belser-Ehrlich S, Harper A, Hussey J, Hallock R. Human and cattle ergotism since 1900: symptoms, outbreaks, and regulations. Toxicol Ind Health. 2013 Abstract
  7. Lee MR. The history of ergot of rye (Claviceps purpurea) III: 1940-80. J R Coll Physicians Edinb. 2010 Abstract
  8. Lee MR. The history of ergot of rye (Claviceps purpurea) I: from antiquity to 1900. J R Coll Physicians Edinb. 2009 Abstract
  9. Lee MR. The history of ergot of rye (Claviceps purpurea) II: 1900-1940. J R Coll Physicians Edinb. 2009 Abstract
  10. MSC - Ministerio de Sanidad y Consumo de España. ORDEN SCO/190/2004, de 28 de enero, por la que se establece la lista de plantas cuya venta al público queda prohibida o restringida por razón de su toxicidad. BOE 2004; 32:5061-6065 Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)

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