Angeliq is a prescription medicine used for treating several menopausal symptoms, such as vaginal problems, hot flashes, or night sweats. This medication, which contains both an estrogen and a progesterone hormone, is only approved for women who still have a uterus. Angeliq comes in tablet form and is typically taken once a day. Potential side effects include headaches, breast pain, and irregular vaginal bleeding.
What Is Angeliq?Angeliq® (drospirenone/estradiol) is a prescription medication that contains both an estrogen hormone and a progesterone hormone. It is approved for treating the following menopause symptoms:
- Itching, burning, or dryness in or around the vagina
- Hot flashes and night sweats.
Angeliq is only approved for women who have not had a hysterectomy (who still have a uterus).
(Click Angeliq Uses for more information on what Angeliq is used for, including possible off-label uses.)
How Does Angeliq Work?Angeliq contains an estrogen (estradiol) and a progestin hormone (drospirenone). It helps to relieve menopausal symptoms by replacing the estrogen that the ovaries no longer produce.
Drospirenone ("drsp") is added to Angeliq, because giving estrogens without a progestin to postmenopausal women can increase the risk of cancer of the lining of the uterus. Drospirenone (which is a progestin) decreases this risk. Of course, this applies only to women who still have a uterus (who have not had a hysterectomy). For women without a uterus, the drospirenone component is usually considered unnecessary.
Angeliq is different from traditional hormone replacement medications in one important way. The progestin that it contains (drospirenone) is more similar to natural progesterone, compared to other synthetic progestins. Drospirenone is closely related to spironolactone, a medication used as a diuretic ("water pill"). Like spironolactone, drospirenone can help decrease fluid retention. Also, drospirenone has antiandrogenic activity, which means that it works against testosterone and other "male" hormones. All women have a small amount of these "male" hormones that can cause acne and other problems, and drospirenone may help counteract the effects of testosterone. However, drospirenone may increase the level of potassium in your blood, which can be a problem for some women.