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Table of Contents > Drug > Megestrol Acetate Print

Megestrol Acetate

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Notes
Related terms
Uses
Dosing
Safety
Author information

Notes

    Related terms
    • Brand Names: U.S.: Megace®;Megace® ES
    • Brand Names: Canada: Apo-Megestrol®;Megace®;Megace® OS;Nu-Megestrol
    • Mexican Brand Names: Mestrel
    • Pharmacologic Category: Antineoplastic Agent, Hormone;Appetite Stimulant;Progestin

    Uses
    • It is used to help raise feelings of hunger.
    • It is used to treat endometrial or breast cancer.
    • Progestins are made by the body and are used by the milk-making glands and to help the period (menstrual) cycle.
    • Megestrol works in the brain to help you eat more.
    • It may lower protein breakdown.
    • If this drug is used for cancer, it changes other hormones and their actions. It may act right on the cancer cells.

    Dosing

    How to take

    • Take tablet with or without food. Take with food if it causes an upset stomach.
    • There is a liquid (suspension) if you cannot swallow pills. Shake well before use.
    • Those who have feeding tubes may also use the liquid. Flush the feeding tube before and after this drug is given.

    Missed Dose

    • Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
    • If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
    • Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.
    • Do not change the dose or stop this drug. Talk with the doctor.

    Storage

    • Store at room temperature.
    • Protect tablets from water. Do not store in a bathroom or kitchen.

    Safety



    Warnings

    • Do not take this drug if you are pregnant. Progestins may cause birth defects. Call your doctor if you think you may be pregnant. This drug does not stop the spread of diseases caused by having sex.
    • Unsafe side effects may happen. This drug cannot be taken while you are taking some other drugs. Check all the drugs you are taking with your doctor.

    Avoid

    • If you have an allergy to megestrol acetate or any other part of this drug.
    • Tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs. Make sure to tell about the allergy and what signs you had. This includes telling about rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
    • If you are pregnant or may be pregnant.
    • If you are breast-feeding.

    Precautions

    • If you have been taking this drug for many weeks, talk with your doctor before stopping. You may want to slowly stop this drug.
    • There are 2 liquids. Make sure you have the right one.
    • If you have any blood flow problems, talk with your doctor.
    • If you have high blood sugar (diabetes), talk with your doctor.
    • Have your blood pressure and heart rate checked often. Talk with your doctor.
    • Do monthly breast self-exams and have a gynecologic exam every year.
    • Check all drugs you are taking with your doctor. This drug may not mix well with some other drugs.
    • Use birth control that you can trust to stop pregnancy while taking this drug and for 1 month after stopping this drug.

    Side Effects

    • Mood changes.
    • Upset stomach or throwing up. Many small meals, good mouth care, sucking hard, sugar-free candy, or chewing sugar-free gum may help.
    • High blood pressure.
    • Headache.
    • More hungry.
    • Weight gain.
    • Hair loss. Hair most often grows back when this drug is stopped.
    • Impotence.
    • Period (menstrual) changes. These include lots of bleeding, spotting, or bleeding between cycles.

    Contact a healthcare provider

    • If you think there was an overdose, call your local poison control center or ER right away.
    • Signs of a very bad reaction to the drug. These include wheezing; chest tightness; fever; itching; bad cough; blue skin color; seizures; or swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat.
    • Signs of low mood (depression), thoughts of killing yourself, nervousness, emotional ups and downs, thinking that is not normal, anxiety, or lack of interest in life.
    • Feeling very tired, weak, or touchy; trembling; having a fast heartbeat, confusion, sweating, or dizziness if you missed a dose or recently stopped this drug.
    • Change in thinking clearly and with logic.
    • Chest pain or pressure.
    • Trouble breathing.
    • Swelling or pain in the leg or arm.
    • More trips to the bathroom, more thirst, or weight loss.
    • Any rash.
    • Health problem is not better or you are feeling worse.

    General Statements

    • If you have a very bad allergy, wear an allergy ID at all times.
    • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
    • Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
    • Most drugs may be thrown away in household trash after mixing with coffee grounds or kitty litter and sealing in a plastic bag.
    • In Canada, take any unused drugs to the pharmacy. Also, visit http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/hl-vs/iyh-vsv/med/disposal-defaire-eng.php#th to learn about the right way to get rid of unused drugs.
    • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
    • Call your doctor for help with any side effects. If in the U.S., you may also call the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or if in Canada, you may also call Health Canada's Vigilance Program at 1-866-234-2345.
    • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including OTC, natural products, or vitamins.

    Author information
    • Copyright © 1978-2010 Lexi-Comp Inc. All rights reserved.

    Copyright © 2011 Natural Standard (www.naturalstandard.com)


    The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.

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