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The chance of developing endometrial cancer is increased by oestrogen (cancer of the lining of the uterus [womb]). Your chance of developing endometrial cancer increases the longer you use oestrogen. Another drug called a progestin should be prescribed to you to use with oestrogen if you have not undergone a hysterectomy (surgical to remove the uterus). Your risk of having endometrial cancer may be reduced as a result, but your risk of acquiring certain other health issues, such as breast cancer, may increase. Inform your doctor if you have cancer now or has had it, if you experience unusual vaginal bleeding, and more before taking oestrogen. Throughout your oestrogen treatment, if you experience any unexpected or abnormal vaginal bleeding, call your doctor right once. In order to prevent endometrial cancer during or after treatment, your doctor will keep a constant eye on you.
According to a big study, dementia, blood clots in the legs or lungs, breast cancer, and heart attacks were all more common in women who used oestrogen together with progestins (loss of ability to think, learn, and understand). These disorders may also be more likely to affect women who take just oestrogen. Inform your doctor if you smoke or use tobacco, if you’ve recently suffered a heart attack or stroke, if you currently have or have previously had breast cancer, or if anybody in your family has any of these conditions. Additionally, let your physician know if you have ever experienced breast lumps, an abnormal mammogram, high blood pressure, high cholesterol or fat levels, diabetes, heart disease, lupus (a condition in which the body attacks its own tissues, causing damage and swelling), high blood sugar, or high blood pressure (x-ray of the breast used to find breast cancer).
The major medical disorders mentioned above can present with any of the symptoms below. If you suffer any of the following signs while taking oestrogen, contact your doctor right away: Speech difficulties, dizziness, faintness, sudden complete or partial vision loss, double vision, numbness or weakness in one arm or leg, excruciating chest pain or heaviness, coughing up blood, sudden shortness of breath, trouble thinking clearly, remembering, or learning new things, breast lumps or other breast changes, discharge from nipples, or pain, tenderness, or redness in one leg.
You can take precautions to lessen your chance of experiencing a significant health issue while taking oestrogen. To prevent heart problems, heart attacks, strokes, or dementia, do not take oestrogen by itself or in combination with a progestin. Use as little oestrogen as necessary to manage your symptoms, and only take it for the duration required. To determine if you should take a lower dose of oestrogen or stop taking the drug, consult your doctor every three to six months.
To assist in the earliest possible detection of breast cancer, you should check your breasts monthly and get a mammography and breast exam conducted by a doctor once a year. Your doctor will instruct you on how to correctly evaluate your breasts and whether you need to have additional screenings beyond once a year due to personal or family medical history.
If you are undergoing surgery or will be recovering in bed, let your doctor know. In order to reduce your risk of developing blood clots, your doctor may advise you to stop taking oestrogen 4-6 weeks before to the procedure or place you on bed rest.
Regularly discuss the advantages and disadvantages of taking oestrogen with your doctor.
Why is this medication prescribed?
When a woman is going through menopause, often known as the “change of life” or the cessation of monthly menstruation cycles, oestrogen is used to treat hot flushes (also known as “hot flashes,” sudden, intense feelings of heat and sweating). Certain brands of oestrogen are also used to treat or prevent osteoporosis (a condition in which the bones become brittle and weak and break easily), vaginal dryness, itching, or burning, and in menopausal women. Women who require a medicine solely to treat vaginal dryness or alone to avoid osteoporosis, however, ought to think about an alternative course of action. Certain brands of oestrogen are also used to treat low oestrogen symptoms in young women who do not naturally make enough oestrogen. Certain oestrogen brands are also employed to treat the signs of specific breast and prostate (a male reproductive gland) cancers. The hormones category of drugs includes oestrogen. It functions by substituting the body’s natural production of oestrogen.
How should this medicine be used?
To be taken orally, oestrogen is available as a tablet. It is typically taken once day, with or without food. Sometimes women take oestrogen every day, and other times they take it on a rotating schedule that alternates between times when they take oestrogen every day and times when they don’t. Usually taken three times a day, oestrogen is used to treat cancer symptoms. Every day, take oestrogen at around the same time(s). Ask your doctor or chemist to explain any instructions on your prescription label that you do not understand. As instructed, take oestrogen as indicated. Never take it in larger or less amounts or more frequently than directed by your doctor.
If your symptoms are still troublesome, your doctor may put you on a low dose of oestrogen and gradually increase it. Once your symptoms are under control, however, your doctor may lower the dose. Discuss the effectiveness of oestrogen with your doctor.
Get a copy of the manufacturer’s information for the patient from your chemist or doctor.
Other uses for this medicine
Ask your doctor or chemist for more details if you believe this drug should be used for something else.
What special precautions should I follow?
Before taking estrogen,
- If you have an allergy to any brand of oral oestrogen, any other oestrogen products, any other medications, or any of the substances in oestrogen pills, let your doctor and chemist know right once. If you intend to take Estrace® brand pills, let your doctor and chemist know if you have any aspirin- or tartrazine-related allergies (a food colour additive). For a list of the inactive components in the brand of oestrogen tablets you intend to take, speak with your chemist or consult the manufacturer’s patient information.
- Inform your doctor and chemist about any prescription and over-the-counter drugs, vitamins, and dietary supplements you are currently taking or intend to take. Incorporate any of the following: (Cordarone, Pacerone) amiodarone; aprepitant (Emend), carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Epitol, Tegretol), some antifungals such itraconazole (Sporanox) and ketoconazole (Nizoral), as well as several other medications; cyclosporine (Neoral, Sandimmune), clarithromycin (Biaxin), and cimetidine (Tagamet); erythromycin (E.E.S, Erythrocin), diltiazem (Cardizem, Dilacor, Tiazac, among others), dexamethasone (Decadron, Dexpak); lovastatin (Altocor, Mevacor), fluvoxamine (Luvox), griseofulvin (Fulvicin, Grifulvin, Gris-PEG), fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem); atazanavir (Reyataz), delavirdine (Rescriptor), and efavirenz are examples of drugs used to treat HIV infection and AIDS (Sustiva), ritonavir (Norvir, in Kaletra), lopinavir (in Kaletra), nelfinavir (Viracept), nevirapine (Viramune), and saquinavir (Fortovase, Invirase); thyroid medicine; nefazodone; phenobarbital, phenytoin (Dilantin, Phenytek), rifampin (Rifadin, Rimactane, in Rifamate), rifabutin (Mycobutin), troleandomycin (TAO), sertraline (Zoloft); zafirlukast with verapamil (Calan, Covera, Isoptin, Verelan) (Accolate). Your physician might need to adjust the dosage of your drugs or keep a close eye on you for side effects.
- Inform your doctor about any herbal medications you are taking, especially if you take St. John’s wort.
- Inform your physician if you currently have or ever had yellowing of the skin or eyes during pregnancy or while using an oestrogen product, uterine fibroids, endometriosis, and other conditions where the tissue that borders the uterus [womb] spreads to other parts of the body (growths in the uterus that are not cancer), asthma, migraines, seizures, porphyria (condition in which abnormal substances accumulate in the blood and cause issues with the skin or nervous system), extremely high or extremely low calcium levels in the blood, thyroid, liver, kidney, gallbladder, or pancreatic disease are some examples of conditions that may cause these symptoms.
- Inform your doctor if you are expecting, intend to get pregnant, or are nursing a baby. When using oestrogen, call your doctor right away if you become pregnant.
- If you are 65 years of age or older, discuss with your doctor the advantages and disadvantages of taking oestrogen. Unless they are also taking other hormones, older women should generally avoid taking oral oestrogen. In comparison to other treatments for the same disease, oral oestrogen given alone is not as safe or effective.
- If you are using oestrogen to prevent osteoporosis, consult your doctor about additional methods of prevention, such as exercise, vitamin D supplementation, and/or calcium supplements.
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
As you take this medication, discuss with your doctor whether you plan to consume grapefruit or grapefruit juice.
If you are taking oestrogen to prevent osteoporosis, ask your doctor how you might increase your intake of calcium and vitamin D.
What should I do if I forget a dose?
If you miss a dosage, take it as soon as you recall. The missed dose should not be taken, but if it is almost time for the following dose, skip it and carry on with your regular dosing plan. To make up for a missing dose, do not take a second one.
What side effects can this medication cause?
Estrogen may have negative effects. Inform your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- Breast discomfort or tenderness
- Stomach ache
- Gaining or losing weight
- Leg cramps
- Arms or legs that are burning or tingling
- Tense muscles
- Hair loss
- Undesired hair growth
- Sporadic darkening of the face’s skin
- Wearing contact lenses with difficulties
- Vaginal enlargement, redness, stinging, itching, or irritation
- Vaginal discharge
- Alterations in sexual drive
- Cold symptoms
Some adverse effects may be severe. Call your doctor right away if you have any of these symptoms or any of the ones listed in the IMPORTANT CAUTION section:
- Bulging eyes
- Infection symptoms such as a sore throat, fever, chills, and cough
- Stomach discomfort, soreness, or pain
- Appetite loss
- Skin or eye yellowing
- Joint pain
- Movements that are difficult to control
- Rash or blisters
- Eyes, face, tongue, throat, hands, arms, feet, ankles, or lower body swelling legs
- Breathing or swallowing difficulties
Estrogen may raise your risk of getting ovarian cancer or gallbladder disease, both of which may require surgical intervention to address. Discuss the dangers of taking oestrogen with your doctor.
In children who take heavy amounts of oestrogen for a long time, growth may stall or cease early. The timing and rate of a child’s sexual development may also be impacted by oestrogen. During your child’s oestrogen treatment, the doctor will keep a close eye on him or her. Discuss the dangers of administering this drug to your kid with their doctor.
Estrogen may have other negative effects. If you experience any strange issues while taking this medicine, contact your doctor right away.
You or your doctor can report a serious side effect to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting programme online or by phone (1-800-332-1088).
What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?
Keep this medication tightly closed in the original container and out of the reach of children. Keep it away from excessive heat and moisture at room temperature (not in the bathroom).
Although many containers (such as weekly pill minders and those for eye drops, creams, patches, and inhalers) are not child-resistant and are simple for young children to open, it is crucial to keep all medications out of sight and out of reach of children. Always lock safety caps and promptly stash medication up and away from young children where it is out of their sight and reach to prevent poisoning. http://www.upandaway.org
Unused prescriptions must be disposed of carefully to prevent pets, kids, and other people from ingesting them. You should not, however, dispose of this medication in the toilet. Instead, utilising a medicine take-back programme is the easiest approach to get rid of your medication. To find out about take-back programmes in your area, speak with your chemist or the garbage/recycling agency in your city. If you do not have access to a take-back programme, see the FDA’s Safe Disposal of Medications website at http://goo.gl/c4Rm4p for additional information.
In case of emergency/overdose
Call the poison control hotline at 1-800-222-1222 in the event of an overdose. Moreover, information can be found online at https://www.poisonhelp.org/help. Call 911 right once if the person has collapsed, experienced a seizure, is having difficulty breathing, or cannot be roused.
Overdose symptoms could include:
- Stomach ache
- Vaginal bleeding
What other information should I know?
Keep all of your doctor’s appointments.
Inform the lab staff and your doctor that you are taking oestrogen prior to any laboratory test.
No one else should take your medication. If you have any inquiries regarding refilling your prescription, speak with your pharmacist.
You should keep a written record of every medication you take, including any over-the-counter (OTC) items, prescription drugs, and dietary supplements like vitamins and minerals. You should carry this list with you whenever you see a doctor or are admitted to the hospital. You should always have this information with you in case of emergencies.
- Amnestrogen® (esterified estrogens)
- Cenestin® (conjugated synthetic A estrogens)
- Enjuvia® (conjugated synthetic B estrogens)
- Estrace® Tablets (estradiol)
- Estratab® (esterified estrogens)
- Evex® (esterified estrogens)
- Femogen® (esterified estrogens)
- Menest® (esterified estrogens)
- Ogen® Tablets (estropipate)
- Ortho-est® (estropipate)
- Premarin® Tablets (conjugated estrogens)