GENERIC NAME: megestrol
BRAND NAME: Megace, Megace ES, Megace Oral
DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Megestrol is a synthetic female hormone belonging to the progesterone group. It is used for stimulating appetite and treating breast cancer. Progesterone is a hormone produced by the body, especially in women, that helps control the menstrual period as well as other body functions. How megestrol stimulates appetite or suppresses cancer is not understood. The FDA approved megestrol in September 1993.
PRESCRIBED FOR: Megestrol is used for stimulating appetite in patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) who have poor appetite, cachexia, or an unexplained significant weight loss. It also is used for treating breast cancer and weight loss associated with cancer.
SIDE EFFECTS: The most common side effects are:
- weight gain,
- mood swings,
- breakthrough menstrual bleeding,
- high blood pressure, and
- excess gas (flatulence).
Quick GuideBreast Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment
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