What is estradiol
(a form of estrogen) is a female sex hormone necessary for
many processes in the body. Estradiol vaginal products release
estrogen that is absorbed directly through the skin of the
topical is used to treat certain symptoms of menopause such
as dryness, burning, and itching of the vaginal area and urgency
or irritation with urination.
may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this
General medical information about estradiol
Estradiol increases the risk of developing a condition
(endometrial hyperplasia) that may lead to cancer of the
lining of the uterus. Taking progestins, another hormone
drug, while using estradiol lowers the risk of developing
this condition. Therefore, if your uterus has not been removed,
your doctor may prescribe a progestin for you to take together
while using estradiol. Visit your doctor regularly and report
any unusual vaginal bleeding right away.
physical exams and examine your breasts for lumps on a monthly
basis while using estradiol.
Do not use this medication
if you are pregnant.
Who should not use estradiol Do not use estradiol without first talking to your
doctor if you have
- a circulation, bleeding, or
- undiagnosed, abnormal
vaginal bleeding; or
- any type of breast, uterine,
or hormone-dependent cancer.
Using estradiol may
be dangerous in some cases if you have any of the conditions
Before using estradiol, tell your doctor if you have:
- high blood pressure, angina, or heart
- high levels of cholesterol or triglycerides
in your blood;
- liver disease;
- kidney disease;
- uterine fibroids;
- had a hysterectomy
- a narrow, short, or prolapsed
- vaginal irritation; or
- a vaginal
You may not be able to use estradiol,
or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring
during treatment if you have any of the conditions listed
Estradiol is in the FDA pregnancy category
X. This means that estradiol will cause birth defects in
an unborn baby. Do not use estradiol if you are pregnant
or are planning a pregnancy.
Estradiol may decrease
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 you use estradiol Use estradiol exactly as directed by your doctor.
If you do not understand these directions, ask your pharmacist,
nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.
To use the
Estring vaginal ring:
- Squeeze the sides of the
ring together and insert it into the vagina as far as possible
(into the upper 1/3 of the vagina). You should not be able
to feel the ring once it is in position. If you can feel
it, use a finger to push it further into the vagina. It
is not possible for the ring to go too far in or become
- The ring should remain in place for 90 days.
It should then be removed and replaced by a new ring, if
prescribed by your doctor. If at any time the 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
- The ring does not need to be removed
during sexual intercourse. It should not be felt by either
partner. If it is bothersome, it can be removed, rinsed
with warm water, and reinserted following intercourse.
To remove the ring, loop a finger through the ring and gently
pull it from the vagina.
To use the estradiol vaginal
- 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. To deliver
the medication, gently insert the applicator deeply into
your vagina and press the plunger downward to its original
- Clean the applicator by pulling the plunger
to remove it from the barrel. Wash it with mild soap and
Have yearly physical exams and examine
your breasts for lumps on a monthly basis while using estradiol.
Store the vaginal rings and cream at room temperature
away from moisture and heat.
If you miss a dose: Insert the next dose of cream or ring as soon as
you remember. Continue to follow your regular schedule.
Do not use two doses simultaneously unless your doctor directs
If at any time the 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 reinsert it.
What happens if you overdose: An overdose of estradiol is unlikely to occur and
is not likely to threaten life. If you do suspect an overdose,
or if the medication has been ingested, call an emergency
room or poison control center for advice.
What should you avoid while using estradiol There are no restrictions on food, beverages, or
activity while using estradiol unless your doctor directs
Possible side effects of estradiol If you experience any of the following serious side
effects, stop using estradiol and seek emergency medical
- an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing;
closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or
face; or hives);
- shortness or breath or pain in
- a painful, red, swollen leg;
abnormal vaginal bleeding;
- pain, swelling, or tenderness
in the abdomen;
- severe headache or vomiting, dizziness,
faintness or changes in vision or speech;
of the skin or eyes; or
- a lump in a breast.
Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur.
Continue to use estradiol and talk to your doctor if you
- decreased appetite, nausea, or vomiting;
- swollen breasts;
- acne or skin color changes;
- decreased sex drive;
- migraine headaches
- vaginal pain, dryness, or discomfort;
- water retention (swollen hands, feet, or ankles);
- depression; or
- changes in your menstrual
cycle or break-through bleeding.
the risk of developing a condition (endometrial hyperplasia)
that may lead to cancer of the lining of the uterus. Taking
progestins, another hormone drug, while using estradiol
lowers the risk of developing this condition. Therefore,
if your uterus has not been removed, your doctor may prescribe
a progestin for you to take while using estradiol. Visit
your doctor regularly and report any unusual vaginal bleeding
is unclear to what extent estrogen treatments may affect the
risk of breast cancer.
Side effects other than those listed here may also occur.
Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual
or that is especially bothersome.
What other drugs will affect estradiol Before using estradiol, tell your doctor if you are
taking any of the following medicines:
- an anticoagulant
(blood thinner) such as warfarin (Coumadin); or
insulin or an oral diabetes medicine such as glipizide (Glucotrol)
and glyburide (Diabeta, Micronase).
A dosage adjustment
or special monitoring may be required during treatment if
you are taking any of the medicines listed above.
Do not use other vaginal products at the same times as estradiol
without first talking to your doctor.
other than those listed here may also interact with estradiol.
Talk to your doctor and pharmacist before taking any prescription
or over-the-counter medicines.