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Other drug names: A-Am An-Az B C-Ch Ci-Cz D-Dh Di-Dz E F G H I-J K-L M-Mh Mi-Mz N-Nh Ni-Nz O P-Pl Pm-Pz Q-R S-Sn So-Sz T-To Tp-Tz U-V W-Z 0-9   


About your treatment

Your doctor has ordered the drug megestrol to help treat your illness. Megestrol comes as tablets and as a liquid to take by mouth.

This medication is used to treat:

  • metastatic breast cancer
  • metastatic endometrial cancer

This medication is sometimes prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Megestrol is similar to progesterone, a hormone produced by the body. It is not known how megestrol prevents cancer cell growth or how it stimulates appetite.

Other uses for this medicine

Megestrol also is used to stimulate appetite and promote weight gain in patients with muscle wasting due to cancer or in patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Megestol has been used with estrogen to prevent pregnancy. It also has been used in the treatment of prostatic hypertrophy, endometriosis, and endometrial hyperplasia. Talk to your doctor about the possible risks of using this drug for your condition.


Before taking megestrol,

  • tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to megestrol or any other drugs.
  • tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications you are taking, especially aspirin and vitamins.
  • tell your doctor if you have or have ever had diabetes, a stroke, or a blood clot.
  • do not take megestrol if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant, call your doctor immediately. Megestrol may harm the fetus.
  • you should know that megestrol may interfere with the normal menstrual cycle (period) in women and may stop sperm production in men. However, you should not assume that you cannot get pregnant or that you cannot get someone else pregnant. Women who are pregnant or breast-feeding should tell their doctors before they begin taking this drug. You should not plan to have children while receiving chemotherapy or for a while after treatments. (Talk to your doctor for further details.) Use a reliable method of birth control to prevent pregnancy.

Side effects

Although side effects from megestrol are not common, they can occur. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:

  • increased appetite and weight gain
  • swelling of the hands, feet, or lower legs
  • increased sugar level in the blood
  • headache
  • breast tenderness
  • impotence
  • decreased sexual desire
  • increase in blood pressure

If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately:

  • nausea or vomiting
  • dizziness
  • weakness
  • leg pain
  • breathing discomfort
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • rapid heartbeat
  • chest pain
  • cough
  • sore throat
  • weakness or numbness of an arm or leg
  • sharp, crushing chest pain or heaviness in chest
  • sudden shortness of breath
  • severe mental depression
  • unusual bruising or bleeding

Storage conditions

Keep megestrol in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.

In case of emergency/overdose

In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.

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Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT