Fem HRT is a prescription medication used to treat symptoms of low estrogen levels in women, such as hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and other symptoms associated with menopause. It can also be used as a form of birth control. It contains a combination of ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone.
Fem HRT is a combination medication that works by supplementing the levels of the hormones estrogen and progesterone in the body to treat symptoms of menopause. Estrogen helps to relieve symptoms such as hormonal changes, hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and bone loss. Progesterone helps to regulate the growth and shedding of the lining of the uterus and reduces the risk of endometrial cancer. By increasing the levels of estrogen and progesterone in the body, Fem HRT can provide relief from menopausal symptoms and help prevent certain health problems associated with menopause.
Use and Dosage
Fem HRT comes in the form of a tablet to take by mouth with or without food as directed by your doctor, usually once a day. The tablets should be swallowed whole with water. Take the medication exactly as prescribed, and do not adjust the dosage or stop taking the medication without first consulting your doctor. You may take it with food or right after a meal to prevent stomach upset.
Take the tablet exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember and continue with your regular schedule. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
Common Side Effects of Fem HRT (Ethinyl Estradiol/ Norethindrone):
- Breast pain
- Light vaginal bleeding or spotting
- Stomach pain
- Thinning scalp hair
- Weight gain
Serious Side Effects of Fem HRT (Ethinyl Estradiol/ Norethindrone):
- Blurred vision
- Bone pain
- Breast lump
- Chest pain or pressure
- Coughing up blood
- Difficulty breathing
- Increased thirst or urination
- Lack of energy
- Memory problems
- Muscle weakness
- Pain or warmth in one or both legs
- Pain spreading to your jaw or shoulder
- Pelvic pain
- Pounding in your neck or ears
- Problems with vision or balance
- Shortness of breath
- Slurred speech
- Stabbing chest pain
- Sudden numbness or weakness (especially on one side of the body)
- Sudden severe headache
- Sudden vision loss
- Swelling of your face lips tongue or throat
- Swelling or tenderness in your stomach
- Unusual behavior
- Unusual vaginal bleeding
- Yellowing of the skin or eyes (jaundice)
Forms and Strength
Fem HRT (Ethinyl Estradiol/ Norethindrone) is available in the following forms and strength:
Fem HRT: Tablet
- Long-term use or high doses of Fem HRT may increase your risk of developing blood clots, which can cause serious health problems like stroke or heart attack.
- Fem HRT may increase your risk of developing breast cancer, particularly if you have a family history of breast cancer or if you have previously had breast cancer.
- Fem HRT should be used with caution in women who have not had a hysterectomy, as it can increase the risk of developing endometrial cancer.
- Fem HRT may interact with other medications, including HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) medications, antifungal medications, and certain antibiotics. You should inform your healthcare provider of all medications you are taking before starting Fem HRT.
- Increased risk of ovarian cancer – Long-term use of Fem HRT may increase the risk of developing ovarian cancer.
- Women who have a history of breast cancer, blood clots, liver disease, or certain types of cancer may not be suitable candidates for Fem HRT.
- Fem HRT use has been associated with an increased risk of developing gallbladder disease.
- The Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) study found that Fem HRT should be started within 10 years of menopause to achieve the most benefits and reduce the risks associated with long-term use.
- Other risks associated with Fem HRT include migraine headaches, high blood pressure, and fluid retention.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Who should not take Fem HRT?
Fem HRT may not be suitable for women with a history of breast cancer, blood clots, liver disease, or certain types of cancer. It should also be used with caution in women who have not had a hysterectomy, as it can increase the risk of developing endometrial cancer.
How long Fem HRT should be taken?
The length of time that Fem HRT should be taken varies depending on the severity of menopausal symptoms and other factors.
What should I do if I miss a dose of Fem HRT?
If you miss a dose of Fem HRT, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for missed doses.
How does Fem HRT affect bone health?
Fem HRT can help prevent bone loss that occurs after menopause, which can reduce the risk of developing osteoporosis. Women who take Fem HRT also consume adequate calcium and vitamin D to support bone health.