HEALTH CABINET

A comprehensive list of prescription and over the counter medications.

ESTRACE

Estrogen is a female hormone that is necessary for many of the normal functions of a woman's body. During menopause a woman's body no longer produces enough estrogen if any estrogen to be effective. The medication, Estrace, is a form of estrogen replacement that helps women going through menopause by minimizing some of the symptoms that doctors associate with their menopausal condition. Estrogen therapy is a popular form of menopause treatments.

Common symptoms that Estrace treats are vaginal dryness and discomfort due to menopause. Estrace is also effective in treating hot flashes and can help prevent osteoporosis since bone loss increases in women after menopause and doctors believe the increased bone loss is due in part to the decrease in estrogen.

Estrace Warnings and Precautions

Women who are pregnant should not take Estrace as it can have negative effects on the unborn fetus. Women with a medical history that includes breast cancer or another malignant disease that is responsive to estrogen should not take Estrace. Women with a strong family history of breast cancer should wait to take Estrace until later in life or until the doctor decides the benefits from taking Estrace outweigh the increased risk of developing cancer from taking Estrace.

Long-term use of Estrace is controversial due, as some doctors believe that cancer can result from extended use of estrogen medications. Patients taking Estrace may need to make certain lifestyle changes that can include diet and exercise changes in an effort to prevent some of the potential side effects that Estrace can cause, such as heart attacks, high blood pressure and strokes.

Estrace Uses

Doctors primarily prescribe Estrace to treat menopause in women who are no longer producing estrogen or who are not producing enough estrogen within their own bodies. Estrace can also be part of a cancer treatment regimen in both men and women. Some doctors use Estrace to treat prostate cancer in men. In men, Estrace antagonizes the male hormones, which is helpful when treating prostate cancer.

Estrace Side Effects

Common side effects of Estrace include dizziness, lightheadedness, upset stomach, headaches, bloating, nausea, weight changes, changes in libido and breast tenderness. More serious side effects include mood changes, lumps in the breast, swelling in the hands and feet, vaginal bleeding, unusual vaginal discharge, vaginal itching or order, yellowing skin and eyes, abdominal pain, pelvic pain, persistent nausea and vomiting, dark urine, increasing and worsening seizures, symptoms of worsening diabetes control symptoms of which include increasing thirst and urination.

Although they rarely develop, more serious side effects include heart attacks, strokes and blood clots. Patients should contact their doctor immediately if they develop any of the following chest pain, jaw pain or left arm pain, sudden severe headaches, weakness on one side of the body, confusion, slurred speech, sudden vision changes, pain or swelling in the legs, difficulty breathing, sudden dizziness or fainting and coughing up blood.

Although unlikely, allergic reactions can happen. Symptoms of allergic reactions to Estrace include rash, itching and swelling, severe dizziness and trouble breathing.

Estrace Interactions

Patients currently taking anastrozole and exemestane should not take Estrace due to the risk of possible dangerous drug interactions. Patients should tell their doctor and pharmacist if they are currently taking blood thinners, corticosteroids. Raloxifene, Tamoxifen, drugs that affect liver enzymes which remove estrogens from the body, Phenobarbital, phenytoin, rifamycins, azole antifungals, macrolide antibiotics and certain anti-seizure medications.

Estrace can impact the effectiveness of some laboratory tests.

Estrace Overdose

Symptoms of Estrace overdose include severe nausea and vomiting or unusual vaginal bleeding. Patients that suspect they are suffering from an overdose of Estrace should contact their physician immediately and seek medical attention to prevent any permanent damage that an overdose may cause.


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