Oestrogel Gel 0.06% (Estradiol Gel)
Oestrogel is the number one post menopause lifestyle management drug used in Canada and Europe to combat menopause and vaginal dryness by a non patch transdermal therapy. Oestrogel is composed of 0.75 mg/1.25 g Estradiol Gel and the drug provides women a safe and effective way of dealing with post menopausal symptoms like hot flushes, itching and mood swings. Oestrogel is approved by the FDA (American Federal Drug Association) and is a bioidentical product – which means that its chemical composition is exactly similar to the estrogen that your body produces. The manufacturer of Oestrogel is Ascend Therapeutics and it is an Rx drug (only a certified doctor can prescribe its use).
How does it work?
OOestrogel contains the active ingredient estradiol (previously spelt oestradiol in the UK), which is a naturally occuring form of the main female sex hormone, oestrogen. Womens’ ovaries gradually produce less and less oestrogen in the period up to the menopause, and oestrogen blood levels decline as a result. The declining levels of oestrogen can cause distressing symptoms, such as irregular periods, hot flushes, night sweats, mood swings and vaginal dryness or itching. Oestrogen (in this case in the form of estradiol) can be given as a supplement to replace the falling levels in the body and help reduce these distressing symptoms of the menopause. This is known as hormone replacement therapy (HRT). HRT is usually only required for short-term relief from menopausal symptoms and its use should be reviewed at least once a year with your doctor.
What is it used for?
Hormone replacement therapy to relieve symptoms of the menopause, Second-line option for preventing osteoporosis in postmenopausal women who are at high risk of fractures and cannot take other medicines licensed for preventing osteoporosis
Conditions treated by Oestrogel
Since this is a medical formulation primarily composed of the female hormone Estrogen, it is specifically used for post menopausal women. Menopause is the medical term used to define the cessation of all menstrual flow. It is a normal biological process, which happens generally in the late forties and medical intervention is only recommended when post menopausal symptoms affect the mental and physical health of a woman. Oestrogel treats symptoms like hot flushes (intense feeling of uncomfortable warmth and profuse sweating) and vaginal dryness. The non documented benefits of Oestrogel include prevention of bone loss or Osteoporosis. This is however not mentioned in the medical labeling of the drug so careful consultation with your physician is recommended.
Oestrogel Dosage information
a.) Typical Dosage Recommendations
Oestrogel comes with a special pump, which is designed to release the exact same amount of Oestrogel every time it is used. The pump should be primed before use by pumping it (two times for 93 gms and once for 50 gms. The standard dosage for Oestrogel is one pump daily on dry skin and the drug should be applied at the same time daily. Apply the gel with the help of the pump from the inner arm to the shoulder. Do not rub in or massage the gel; just wait for 5 minutes till it dries. Afterwards wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water. The dosage should never be changed without prior medical consultation.
b.) Missing a dose
If you forget to take a dose of Oestrogel, take the missing dose as soon as you remember it on the same day. If you happen to remember it the next day, take the normal Oestrogel dose at the usual time. Do not try to double dose or take two doses in the same day.
The overdose effects will depend on a number of factors like dosage strength and whether it was ingested orally or applied externally. The commonest overdose symptoms are generally not medically serious. They can comprise of stomach irritation, nausea and vomiting. In some cases, Oestrogel overdose may lead to vaginal bleeding or spotting. However, if you have overdosed on Oestrogel seek medical help immediately or at least consult your doctor about it. Treatment of overdose is generally symptomatic in nature and is unlikely to involve any serious medical steps.
You should do some research about the nature of Oestrogel before going for a course of Oestrogel treatment to combat your post menopausal issues. Adequate diagnostic actions like endometrial sampling should be prescribed to rule out the occurrence of endometrial cancerous growths in case of persistent or abnormal vaginal spotting or bleeding. The Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) reported increase in the occurrence of DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) and strokes in women of the age group 50-79 who were on Oestrogel or other hormone related Estrogen based treatments for a total time period of 6 years and above. In women who took progestin treatment or MPA (Medroxyprogesterone Acetate 2.5) with Oestrogel for a period of more than 5 years, a greater risk for breast cancer, pulmonary emboli, myocardial infarction was documented by the Women’s Health Initiative. WHIMS or the women’s Health Initiative Memory Study reported a risk of Dementia (loss of brain function which affects memory, thinking, language, logic, functions etc) in women over 65 who were on Oestrogel treatment for more than 5 years. The risks are magnified in women who are taking MPA along with Oestrogel. You should store the Oestrogel formulation you are using in the exact temperature and environment as prescribed in the medical literature accompanying the drug. Be careful to keep it out of reach of children. Do not smoke or use Tobacco as medical research conclusively proves that tobacco consumption along with Oestrogel magnifies all risks connected with Oestrogel treatment by about 20%.
Oestrogel Side Effects
The commonest side effects of using Oestrogel are:
- Tenderness in breast
- Weight changes
Remember that your physician has prescribed Oestrogel because he believes that the benefits largely overweigh the symptomatic side effects. If you note any other abnormal occurrence, consult your physician immediately. Medically serious side effects requiring urgent medical intervention are listed below:
- Mood changes (depression, memory loss)
- Breast lumps
- Abnormal vaginal bleeding (breakthrough bleeding, spotting or recurrent bleeding)
- Increased or fresh vaginal irritation or discharge
- Frequent vomiting or persistent nausea
- Severe abdominal/stomach pain
- Yellowing eyes or skin
- Discharge of dark urine
- Swelling of hands and feet
- Startlingly increased thirst/urination
- Occurrence of unusual rashes which may indicate drug allergies
Oestrogel Drug Interactions
Several medicines may produce undesirable effects if used in combination with Oestrogel which is why you should always report your previous medical history to your physician. Seizure Medications including Carbamezapine, Oxcarbazepine, Phenytoin. Check the other versions of these drugs as even they would cause the same effects. Cyclosporine’s like Gengral, Neoral and Sandiimmune. HIV medications (protease inhibitors) like Amprenazir, Atazanavir, Fosamprenavir, Indinavir, Retonavir etc. Antibiotics of Rifamycin family like Rifabutin, Rifampin, and Rifapentin. St Johns’ Wort or Hypercom Perforate (an herbal supplement) may cause Oestrogel byproducts in your body to metabolize too quickly leading to low levels of Estrogen. Thyroid replacement medicines like Liothryonin, Liotrix, Levothryoxine etc. Antifungal medicines likeClarithomycin, Erythomycin, Isoniazid, Telithromyocin etc. Before taking any other new medications when you are on an Oestrogel course, you should consult your physician.
|Equivalent Brand||Estrace Gel|
|Generic Name||Estradiol Gel|
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