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Megace (Megestrol Acetate)

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Full information about Megace

General Information On Megace

Megace is an oral medication which contains megestrol acetate, a synthetic alternative of the naturally occurring steroid hormone, and progesterone. The generic name of Megace is megestrol. The medication is used for the treatment of advanced carcinoma of the breast and endometrium. It is also prescribed to increase appetite and prevent weight loss in various conditions. Though it is not known how the drug boosts appetite, Megace can lead to high blood sugar if used for this purpose.

The exact mechanism of how Megace brings about antineoplastic effects against endometrial carcinoma is yet to be discovered, but it is speculated that a decrease in estrogen secretion and pituitary gonadotropin production are the factors responsible for it. The medication not only curbs the growth of hormone dependent breast cancer cells, but is also capable of eliminating and modifying the stimulatory effects of estrogen on those cells.

Megace has a direct effect on the lining of the uterine wall as well, so a patient must buy Megace only if prescribed, and it should be administered under the supervision of a doctor. The medication in the form of an oral suspension consists of inactive ingredients like purified water, sodium citrate, sucrose, citric acid, alcohol, lemon-lime flavor, xantham gum, sodium benzoate, and polysorbate 80, and 40mg of micronized megestrol acetate as the main ingredient.

A patient should consult his/her doctor if he/she has any allergies to the ingredients in Megace to prevent severe allergic reactions. One must also inform the doctor about his/her medical history, especially if he/she has diabetes, blood clots, congestive heart failure, high blood pressure, kidney problems, unusual vaginal bleeding, and adrenal gland problems.

Side Effects of Megace

Megace, like many other drugs, has its share of side effects, the severity of which varies from person to person. There have been reports that the use of Megace can lead to thromboembolic phenomena, including thrombophlebitis and pulmonary embolism.

Weight gain is one of the most common side effects of Megace It is directly associated with increased appetite, though it is not necessary that such weight gain is also associated with fluid retention.

A patient should contact his or her doctor in case he or she experiences any of the following side effects:

  • Fast heartbeat
  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Swelling in the hands and feet

The major side effects of Megace are:

  • Edema
  • Tumor flare
  • Malaise
  • Rash
  • Lethargy
  • Hyperglycemia
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Heart failure
  • Mood changes
  • Sweating

Dosage of Megace

The recommended dosage of Megace for adults varies depending on the condition being treated. For the treatment of breast cancer the recommended dose is 160 mg perday. For the treatment of endometrial carcinoma 40-320 mg per day is given to the patient in divided doses. When used as a therapy for anorexia, cachexia, or an unexplained weight loss in patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) the dosage is Megace 800mg per day, and if taken in the form of an oral suspension, the recommended dose is 20 ml per day. Doctors may recommend daily doses of 400 and 800 mg a day as per a patient’s individual condition.


Megace can interact with several drugs and lead to complications. The medications that react with Megace include:

  • Immunosuppressive medications like immunomodulators/efalizumab.
  • Natalizumab megestrol/dofetilide.

Inform your doctor about all the prescription, over the counter, and herbal drugs or supplements you are using before you buy Megace.

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