Estrogel

Estrogel treats symptoms of menopause including hot flashes and vaginal dryness. It is available as a gel and is applied daily.

Estrogel Overview

Updated: 

Estrogel is a prescription medication used to treat symptoms of menopause including hot flashes and vaginal dryness.

Estrogel contains estradiol which is a form of the hormone estrogen. It replaces estrogen that is not naturally produced by the ovaries.

This medication comes as a gel. It is usually applied once a day.

Common side effects of Estrogel include headache, gas, and breast pain.

Patient Ratings for Estrogel

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What are you taking Estrogel for?

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  • Other
  • Hot Flashes
  • Hypogonadism
  • Menopause, Premature
  • Menorrhagia
  • Osteoporosis, Postmenopausal
  • Primary Ovarian Insufficiency
  • Prostatic Neoplasms

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  • Less than a week
  • A couple weeks
  • A month or so
  • A few months
  • A year or so
  • Two years or more

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Estrogel Cautionary Labels

precautions

Uses of Estrogel

Estrogel is a prescription medication used to treat symptoms of menopause including hot flashes and vaginal dryness.

This medication may be prescribed for other uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Manufacturer

Estrogel Drug Class

Estrogel is part of the drug class:

Side Effects of Estrogel

Serious side effects have been reported with Estrogel. See the “Estrogel Precautions” section.

Common side effects of Estrogel include the following:

  • headache
  • gas
  • breast pain
  • stomach or abdominal cramps, bloating
  • nausea and vomiting
  • hair loss
  • fluid retention
  • vaginal yeast infection

This is not a complete list of Estrogel side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Estrogel Interactions

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Especially tell your doctor if you take:

  • Amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone)
  • Antifungals such as itraconazole (Sporanox) and ketoconazole (Nizoral)
  • Aprepitant (Emend)
  • Carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Epitol, Tegretol)
  • Cimetidine (Tagamet)
  • Clarithromycin (Biaxin)
  • Cyclosporine (Neoral, Sandimmune)
  • Dexamethasone (Decadron, Dexpak)
  • Diltiazem (Cardizem, Dilacor, Tiazac, others)
  • Erythromycin (E.E.S, Erythrocin)
  • Fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem)
  • Fluvoxamine (Luvox)
  • Griseofulvin (Fulvicin, Grifulvin, Gris-PEG)
  • Lovastatin (Altocor, Mevacor)
  • Medications for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) such as atazanavir (Reyataz), delavirdine (Rescriptor), efavirenz (Sustiva), indinavir (Crixivan), lopinavir (in Kaletra), nelfinavir (Viracept), nevirapine (Viramune), ritonavir (Norvir, in Kaletra), and saquinavir (Fortovase, Invirase)
  • Medications for thyroid disease
  • Nefazodone
  • Other medications that contain estrogen
  • Phenobarbital
  • Phenytoin (Dilantin, Phenytek); rifabutin (Mycobutin)
  • Rifampin 
  • Sertraline (Zoloft)
  • Troleandomycin (TAO)
  • Verapamil (Calan, Covera, Isoptin, Verelan)
  • Zafirlukast (Accolate)
  • St. John's Wort

This is not a complete list of Estrogel drug interactions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Estrogel Precautions

Serious side effects have been reported with Estrogel including the following:

  • bulging eyes
  • yellowing of the skin or eyes
  • itching
  • loss of appetite
  • fever
  • joint pain
  • stomach tenderness, pain, or swelling
  • movements that are difficult to control
  • hives
  • rash or blisters on the skin
  • swelling, of the eyes, face, lips, tongue, throat, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
  • hoarseness
  • wheezing
  • difficulty breathing or swallowing

Do not use if you:

  • are allergic to Estrogel or to any of its ingredients or have a known angioedema to Estrogel
  • have abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • have a known or suspected history of breast cancer
  • have a known or suspected estrogen-dependent cancer
  • had a stroke or heart attack
  • currently have or have had blood clots
  • currently have or have had liver problems
  • have been diagnosed with a bleeding disorder
  • are pregnant or possibly pregnant

Estrogel Food Interactions

Grapefruit and grapefruit juice may interact with estradiol and lead to potentially dangerous effects. Discuss the use of grapefruit products with your doctor.

Inform MD

Before using Estrogel, tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions. Especially tell your doctor if you:

  • have certain conditions, such as asthma (wheezing), epilepsy (seizures), diabetes, migraine, endometriosis, lupus, angioedema (swelling of face and tongue), or problems with your heart, liver, thyroid, kidneys, or high calcium levels in your blood.
  • are allergic to Estrogel or to any of its ingredients or have a known angioedema to Estrogel
  • have abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • have a known or suspected history of breast cancer
  • have a known or suspected estrogen-dependent cancer
  • had a stroke or heart attack
  • currently have or have had blood clots
  • have been diagnosed with a bleeding disorder
  • are going to have surgery or will be on bed rest
  • are pregnant or breastfeeding

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Estrogel and Pregnancy

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

Estrogel should not be used during pregnancy. There appears to be little or no increased risk of birth defects in children born to women who inadvertently used estrogens during early pregnancy. Talk to your doctor right away if you become pregnant while using Estrogel.

Estrogel and Lactation

Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed.

Estrogel should not be used during lactation. Estrogen has been detected in human breast milk. Estrogen can decrease the quality or quantity of breast milk. Caution should be taken if Estrogel is given to a nursing mother. 

Estrogel Usage

Use Estrogel exactly as prescribed.

Estrogel comes as a gel. It is usually applied once a day.

  • Estrogel is for skin use only.
  • Estrogel contains alcohol, which is flammable. Avoid fire, flame or smoking until Estrogel has dried.
  • You and your healthcare provider should talk regularly (for example, every 3 to 6 months) about the dose you are taking and whether you still need treatment with Estrogel. 

Estrogel Dosage

Take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully.

The dose your doctor recommends may be based on the following:

  • the condition being treated
  • other medical conditions you have
  • other medications you are taking
  • how you respond to this medication

The recommended dose of Estrogel (estradiol) transdermal gel for the treatment of menopause symptoms is one (1) pump applied to the arm. 

Estrogel Overdose

If you apply too much Estrogel, call your healthcare provider or local Poison Control Center, or seek emergency medical attention right away.

Other Requirements

  • Store at 20° to 25°C (68° to 77°F).
  • Keep this and all medicines out of the reach of children.

Estrogel FDA Warning

WARNING: ENDOMETRIAL CANCER, CARDIOVASCULAR DISORDERS, BREAST CANCER AND PROBABLE DEMENTIA

Estrogen-Alone Therapy

There is an increased risk of endometrial cancer in women with a uterus who use unopposed estrogens 

Estrogen-alone therapy should not be used for the prevention of cardiovascular disease or dementia

The Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) estrogen-alone substudy reported increased risks of stroke and deep vein thrombosis (DVT)

The WHI Memory Study (WHIMS) estrogen-alone ancillary study of WHI reported an increased risk of probable dementia in postmenopausal women 65 years of age and older 

Estrogen Plus Progestin Therapy

Estrogen plus progestin therapy should not be used for the prevention of cardiovascular disease or dementia 

The WHI estrogen plus progestin substudy reported increased risks of stroke, DVT, pulmonary embolism (PE), and myocardial infarction (MI) 

The WHI estrogen plus progestin substudy reported increased risks of invasive breast cancer

The WHIMS estrogen plus progestin ancillary study of WHI reported an increased risk of probable dementia in postmenopausal women 65 years of age and older