estradiol vaginal (local)

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estradiol vaginal (local)

Pronunciation:ess tra DYE ole VAJ in ul (LO kul)
Brand:Estrace Vaginal Cream, Estring, Vagifem

What is the most important information I should know about estradiol vaginal (local)?

Some estradiol products placed directly into the vagina are used for "local" treatment of vaginal menopause symptoms involving the secretions and surrounding tissues of the vagina. Other vaginal estradiol products are used for treating menopause symptoms affecting the vagina as well as other parts of the body (such as hot flashes). This type of vaginal estradiol has "systemic" effects, meaning that it can affect parts of the body other than where the medicine is placed or applied.

The information in this leaflet is specific to estradiol vaginal products that are used for local treatment of symptoms.

donotDo not use this medication if you have any of the following conditions: a history of stroke or blood clot, circulation problems, a hormone-related cancer such as breast or uterine cancer, or abnormal vaginal bleeding.
nopregThis medication can cause birth defects in an unborn baby. Do not use if you are pregnant. Use an effective form of birth control, and tell your doctor if you become pregnant during treatment.

Estradiol increases your risk of developing endometrial hyperplasia, a condition that may lead to cancer of the uterus. Taking progestins while using estradiol may lower this risk. If your uterus has not been removed, your doctor may prescribe a progestin for you to take while you are using estradiol vaginal.

Long-term estradiol treatment may increase your risk of breast cancer, heart attack, or stroke. Talk with your doctor about your individual risks before using estradiol long-term. Your doctor should check your progress on a regular basis (every 3 to 6 months) to determine whether you should continue this treatment.

Have regular physical exams and self-examine your breasts for lumps on a monthly basis while using estradiol.

What is estradiol vaginal (local)?

Estradiol is a form of estrogen, a female sex hormone the regulates many processes in the body.

Estradiol vaginal (local) is used to treat certain symptoms of menopause such as dryness, burning, and itching of the vaginal area. Estradiol vaginal also reduces urgency or irritation of urination.

Estradiol vaginal (local) may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using estradiol vaginal (local)?

donotYou should not use estradiol vaginal if you have:
  • a bleeding or blood-clotting disorder;
  • a history of stroke or circulation problems;
  • abnormal vaginal bleeding that a doctor has not checked; or
  • any type of breast, uterine, or hormone-dependent cancer.

To make sure you can safely use estradiol vaginal, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

  • high blood pressure, angina, or heart disease;
  • high cholesterol or triglycerides;
  • liver disease;
  • kidney disease;
  • asthma;
  • epilepsy or other seizure disorder;
  • migraines;
  • diabetes;
  • depression;
  • gallbladder disease; or
  • if you have had your uterus removed (hysterectomy).

Estradiol increases your risk of developing endometrial hyperplasia, a condition that may lead to cancer of the uterus. Taking progestins while using estradiol may lower this risk. If your uterus has not been removed, your doctor may prescribe a progestin for you to take while you are using estradiol vaginal.

Long-term estradiol treatment may increase your risk of stroke. Talk with your doctor about your individual risks before using estradiol long-term. Your doctor should check your progress on a regular basis (every 3 to 6 months) to determine whether you should continue this treatment.

nopregFDA pregnancy category X. This medication can harm an unborn baby or cause birth defects. Do not use estradiol vaginal if you are pregnant. Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant during treatment.
nobrfeedEstradiol may decrease breast milk flow and have other effects on milk composition. Do not use estradiol without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I use estradiol vaginal (local)?

Some estradiol products placed directly into the vagina are used for "local" treatment of vaginal menopause symptoms involving the secretions and surrounding tissues of the vagina. Other vaginal estradiol products are used for treating menopause symptoms affecting the vagina as well as other parts of the body (such as hot flashes). This type of vaginal estradiol has "systemic" effects, meaning that it can affect parts of the body other than where the medicine is placed or applied.

The information in this leaflet is specific to estradiol vaginal products that are used for local treatment of symptoms.

Use exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

To use the estradiol vaginal ring:

  • Squeeze the sides of the ring together and insert it into the vagina as far as possible. You should not be able to feel the ring once it is in place. If you can feel it, use a finger to push it in farther. It is not possible for the ring to go too far in or become lost.
  • Leave the ring in place for 90 days. If the ring ever falls out, rinse it with warm water and reinsert it. If it slides down into the lower part of the vagina, use a finger to push it in farther. After 90 days, remove the ring. Your doctor may want you to replace it with a new ring.
  • The ring does not need to be removed during sexual intercourse. Neither partner should be able to feel the ring when it is in place. If the ring is bothersome, you may remove it, rinse it with warm water, and reinsert it after intercourse.
  • To remove the ring, loop a finger through the ring and gently pull it from the vagina.

To use the estradiol vaginal cream:

  • Using the marked applicator provided, measure the prescribed dose of cream.
  • Lie on your back with your knees drawn up, sit, or stand in a position that allows you comfortable access to the vaginal area. Gently insert the applicator deep into your vagina and press in the plunger to empty the cream from the applicator into the vagina.
  • Take apart the applicator and wash it with mild soap and warm water. Allow the applicator to dry completely before using it again.

To use the estradiol vaginal tablets:

  • Each vaginal tablet is supplied in a disposable applicator.
  • Lie on your back with your knees drawn up, sit, or stand in a position that allows you comfortable access to the vaginal area. Gently insert the applicator deep into your vagina and press in the plunger to empty the tablet into the vagina.
  • Throw the applicator away.

Have regular physical exams and self-examine your breasts for lumps on a monthly basis while using estradiol vaginal.

rtStore this medication at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

If a vaginal ring falls out, rinse it with warm water and reinsert it. If it slides down into the lower part of the vagina, use a finger to push it in farther.

What happens if I overdose?

emtSeek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Overdose symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, and vaginal bleeding.

What should I avoid while using estradiol vaginal (local)?

Avoid using other vaginal products without your doctor's advice.

What are the possible side effects of estradiol vaginal (local)?

emtGet emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
donotCall your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:
  • chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, general ill feeling;
  • sudden numbness or weakness, especially on one side of the body;
  • sudden headache, confusion, problems with vision, speech, or balance;
  • pain, swelling, warmth, or redness in one or both legs;
  • abnormal vaginal bleeding;
  • pain, swelling, or tenderness in your stomach;
  • jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or
  • a lump in your breast.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite;
  • swollen breasts;
  • acne or skin color changes;
  • decreased sex drive, impotence, or difficulty having an orgasm;
  • migraine headaches or dizziness;
  • vaginal pain, dryness, or discomfort;
  • swelling of your ankles or feet;
  • depression; or
  • changes in your menstrual periods, break-through bleeding.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect estradiol vaginal (local)?

Tell your doctor about all other medicines you use, especially:

  • St. John's wort;
  • phenobarbital (Solfoton);
  • a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven);
  • ritonavir (Norvir, Kaletra);
  • carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Tegretol);
  • rifampin (Rifadin, Rifater, Rifamate, Rimactane);
  • antibiotics such as clarithromycin (Biaxin) or erythromycin (E.E.S., EryPed, Ery-Tab, Erythrocin, Pediazole); or
  • antifungal medicine such as antifungal medication such as itraconazole (Sporanox), ketoconazole (Nizoral), miconazole (Oravig), or voriconazole (Vfend).

This list is not complete and other drugs may interact with estradiol vaginal. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

Your pharmacist can provide more information about estradiol vaginal (local).


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

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