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Activella (Estradiol/Norethindrone) is a hormone replacement medication that helps alleviate menopause symptoms. It contains the female hormones Estradiol and Norethindrone, which are responsible for ovulation, menstruation, and other important functions throughout the body. It is provided as a pill and should be taken by mouth with or without food. You will need a valid prescription to purchase Activella.
During menopause, which normally occurs between ages 45 and 55, a woman’s body slowly produces less of the hormones estrogen and progesterone. This depletion of estrogen can bring on a combination of hormonal and chemical fluctuations that can lead to changes in your brain and nervous system. You may experience mood swings, memory loss, problems focusing, irritability, fatigue, hot flashes, night sweats, stress, anxiety and depression.
Activella is most often prescribed to reduce the symptoms of menopause. It tends to be particularly effective as treatment for hot flashes, mood swings, and vaginal dryness, though it is not a cure for these symptoms. Activella works by supplementing your body’s estrogen and progesterone levels which decrease naturally during menopause. If you are using Activella to treat symptoms only in and around the vagina, products applied directly inside the vagina should be considered before medications that are taken by mouth, absorbed through the skin, or injected.
Activella may also be prescribed to reduce the risk of uterine cancer in women taking estrogen or to prevent osteoporosis following menopause. However, medications such as Raloxifene and Alendronate are also effective in preventing bone loss and may be safer.
Before you start taking Activella, you should inform your doctor about any reproductive issues that you have experienced. These may include unexplained vaginal bleeding, abnormal mammograms, or endometrial, cervical, or vaginal cancers. In addition, be sure to advise whether you have been diagnosed with cardiovascular problems such as high blood pressure, heart failure, or blood clots. Your doctor should also be advised of any seizures, thyroid problems, migraines, or jaundice in your medical history. You should not take Activella if you have undergone a hysterectomy.
Using this medicine may increase your risk for having blood clots, strokes, or heart attacks. This risk may continue even after you stop using Activella. The risk for these serious problems is even greater if you have: high blood pressure; high cholesterol in your blood; diabetes; or are overweight or smoke cigarettes.
Activella may interact with many medications, including macrolide antibiotics, azole antifungal drugs, and beta blockers, so these should be avoided while taking Activella unless otherwise directed by your doctor. Failing to do so may result in lowered efficacy or more severe side effects.
Estradiol increases the risk of developing endometrial hyperplasia, a condition that may lead to cancer of the lining of the uterus. Using a progestin, such as Norethindrone with Estradiol lowers the risk of developing this condition. You should report any unusual vaginal bleeding to your doctor right away.
You may need to stop taking Activella or take special precautions if you will be confined to bed or a sitting position for an extended period of time, as these conditions increase your risk of getting blood clots.