Menopause Home > Ensuring Safe Treatment With Prometrium
Specific Precautions and Warnings With PrometriumWarnings and precautions to be aware of prior to using Prometrium include the following:
- Prometrium is often used in combination with estrogen medications. Many of the warnings and precautions that are typically provided for Prometrium are actually problems seen in studies that used a combination of an estrogen medication with a synthetic progesterone-like medication (a "progestin"). It is not known if taking Prometrium (a bio-identical progesterone) is any more safe than the synthetic progestin used in these studies. It is also not known if taking Prometrium alone (without estrogen) also carries such risks.
- Studies have shown that estrogen-plus-progestin hormone replacement therapy increases the risks of heart attacks, strokes, and blood clots in the legs and lungs. In no case should Prometrium be used to prevent heart disease (see Hormone Replacement Therapy and Heart Health), as it is not effective for this use.
- Similar progesterone-like medications, when combined with estrogen, may increase the risk of breast cancer and ovarian cancer. Adding a progestin to an estrogen medication may increase the risk of breast cancer, compared to taking just an estrogen. Proper screening and monitoring (as determined by your healthcare provider), such as yearly mammograms and monthly self breast exams, is recommended.
- Prometrium can cause fluid retention (water weight gain), which can cause problems for people with seizures, epilepsy, migraines, heart problems, or kidney disease.
- Let your healthcare provider know if you have depression or a history of depression, as Prometrium could make depression worse.
- Let your healthcare provider know right away if you have any vision changes or if you get a migraine for the first time while taking Prometrium.
- Let your healthcare provider know if you have abnormal vaginal bleeding, such as heavy bleeding or bleeding between periods, while taking Prometrium.
- Estrogen-plus-progestin hormone replacement therapy seems to increase the risk of dementia. In no case should Prometrium be used to prevent or treat dementia, as it is not effective for this use.
- If you have diabetes, your healthcare provider may recommend that you monitor your blood sugar more closely when starting or stopping Prometrium, in case you experience any changes in your blood sugar control.
- The medication can cause dizziness and low blood pressure (especially upon standing).
- Prometrium can interact with a number of different medications (see Prometrium Drug Interactions).
- Prometrium is considered a pregnancy Category B medication, which means that it is probably safe for use during pregnancy, although the full risks are not known (see Prometrium During Pregnancy).
- The hormones in Prometrium pass through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the drug (see Prometrium and Breastfeeding).