GENERIC NAME: esterified estrogens
BRAND NAME: Estratab (Discontinued in the USA), Menest
DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Esterified estrogens are a mixture of several estrogens, a type of female hormone. Estrogens cause growth and development of female sex organs and the maintenance of sex characteristics, including growth of underarm and pubic hair and shaping of body contours and skeleton. Estrogens also increase secretions from the cervix and promote growth of the inner lining of the uterus (endometrium).
PRESCRIBED FOR: Esterified estrogens are prescribed for the treatment of the common symptoms associated with menopause (for, example, hot flashes and vaginal dryness), dysfunctional (excessive and painful) uterine bleeding, female castration, female hypogonadism (reduced production of female hormones by the ovaries), prostate cancer, and breast cancer.
SIDE EFFECTS: The most common endocrine side effects are
- bleeding or spotting,
- loss of periods, or
- excessively prolonged periods,
- breast pain,
- breast enlargement, and
- changes in sexuality (increase or decrease in libido).
Other important side effects include:
Quick GuideWhat to Expect During Menopause as You Age
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