Pronunciation: med-ROX-ee-proe-JES-ter-one AS-e-tate
Common Brand Name(s): Depo-Provera
Important: How To Use This Information
This is a summary and does NOT have all possible information about this product. This information does not assure that this product is safe, effective, or appropriate for you. This information is not individual medical advice and does not substitute for the advice of your health care professional. Always ask your health care professional for complete information about this product and your specific health needs.
This medication may cause serious bone loss which may not return to normal after you stop using it. The risk of bone loss increases with longer use of this medication. This medication should not be used for longer than 2 years unless other birth control methods will not work for you. An important time when your bones continue to build up is during your teenage and young adult years. Use of this medication may increase the risk of weak/brittle bones (osteoporosis), which can lead to broken bones when you are older. Talk with your doctor about the risks and benefits of this medication and other birth control choices.
Do not use this medication if you smoke cigarettes/use tobacco and are over 35 years old. Smoking raises your risk of stroke, heart attack, blood clots, and high blood pressure from hormonal birth control (such as the pill, patch, ring). The risk of these serious problems increases with age and with the number of cigarettes you smoke. Do not smoke or use tobacco.
This medication is used to prevent pregnancy. Medroxyprogesterone is like a natural hormone made by the body. It works mainly by preventing the growth and release of an egg (ovulation) during your menstrual cycle. It also makes vaginal fluid thicker to help prevent sperm from reaching an egg (fertilization) and changes the lining of the uterus (womb) to prevent attachment of a fertilized egg.
Medroxyprogesterone is also used to treat endometriosis. It works by lowering the amount of certain hormones in the body and decreasing the growth of abnormal tissues that cause endometriosis. This helps reduce pain and other symptoms.
Using this medication does not protect you or your partner against sexually transmitted diseases (such as HIV, gonorrhea, chlamydia).
How To Use
Read the Patient Information Leaflet provided by your pharmacist before you start using this product and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
This medication is given by injection into a muscle (upper arm or buttock) as directed by your doctor, usually once every 3 months. To make sure you are not pregnant, the first injection is usually given during the first 5 days of your menstrual period. If you have just given birth or had a pregnancy loss or abortion after the first 3 months of pregnancy, talk with your doctor about the best time to start using this form of birth control.
If you are using this medication at home, learn all preparation and usage instructions from your health care professional. Before using, check this product visually for particles or discoloration. If either is present, do not use the liquid. Learn how to store and discard medical supplies safely.
It is very important that you use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. If more than 13 weeks pass between injections, you could become pregnant. Use a form of non-hormonal birth control (such as condoms, diaphragm, spermicide) to prevent pregnancy until you can get the next injection. Your doctor may direct you to first have a pregnancy test before your next injection.
Nausea, bloating, headache, changes in appetite, weight gain, tiredness, swelling, acne, hot flashes, breast tenderness, or irritation/pain at the injection site may occur. Vaginal bleeding between periods (spotting) or missed/irregular periods may occur, especially during the first few months of use. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly. Your periods may stop completely after you have been receiving this medication for about a year. If this occurs, your periods will normally return after you stop using this medication. If you miss a period and have missed an injection, or if more than 13 weeks pass between injections and you think you might be pregnant, contact your doctor for a pregnancy test.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including:
- mental/mood changes (such as new/worsening depression)
- changes in sexual interest/ability
- swelling of the ankles/feet
- bone pain
- unusual changes in vaginal bleeding (such as continuous spotting, sudden heavy bleeding)
- persistent nausea/vomiting
- severe stomach/abdominal/pelvic pain
- unusual weakness/tiredness
- dark urine
- yellowing eyes/skin
This medication may increase your risk of breast cancer. Tell your doctor right away if you have symptoms such as a lump in the breast, nipple discharge. Ask your doctor for more details.
This medication may rarely cause serious (sometimes fatal) problems from blood clots (such as deep vein thrombosis, heart attack, pulmonary embolism, stroke). Get medical help right away if you have:
- shortness of breath/rapid breathing
- chest/jaw/left arm pain
- unusual sweating
- sudden dizziness/fainting
- pain/swelling/warmth in the groin/calf
- sudden/severe headaches
- slurred speech
- weakness on one side of the body
- sudden vision changes
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including:
- itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat)
- severe dizziness
- trouble breathing
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Before using medroxyprogesterone, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of:
- blood clots (for example, in the legs, eyes, lungs)
- unexplained vaginal bleeding
- abnormal breast exam
- personal or family history of cancer (especially breast or cervical cancer)
- daily use of alcohol/tobacco
- eating disorder (anorexia)
- heart problems (such as heart failure, irregular heartbeat, previous heart attack)
- high blood pressure
- kidney disease
- liver disease (including tumors)
- high cholesterol or triglyceride (blood fat) levels
- stroke or "mini-stroke" (transient ischemic attack)
- personal/family history of bone disease (such as osteoporosis)
Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products).
It may take longer for you to become pregnant after you stop using this medication. Consult your doctor.
This medication must not be used during pregnancy. If you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant, tell your doctor right away.
This drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.
Some drugs may cause hormonal birth control to work less well by decreasing the amount of birth control hormones in your body. This effect can result in pregnancy. Examples include griseofulvin, modafinil, rifamycins (such as rifampin, rifabutin), St. John's wort, drugs used to treat seizures (such as barbiturates, carbamazepine, felbamate, phenytoin, primidone, topiramate), HIV drugs (such as nelfinavir, nevirapine, ritonavir), among others.
Tell your doctor when you start any new drug, and discuss if you should use additional reliable birth control. Also tell your doctor if you have any new spotting or breakthrough bleeding, because these may be signs that your birth control is not working well.
This medication may interfere with certain laboratory tests (including certain hormone levels, blood tests for clotting factors, thyroid/liver function tests), possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you are using this medication.
If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
Do not share this medication with others.
Keep all regular medical and laboratory appointments. You should have regular complete physical exams including blood pressure, breast exam, pelvic exam, and screening for cervical cancer (Pap smear). Your doctor may test your bone density while you are using this medication. Be sure to get enough vitamin D and calcium in your diet. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about calcium/vitamin D supplements to help keep your bones healthy. Follow your doctor's instructions for examining your breasts, and report any lumps right away. Consult your doctor for more details.
For the best possible benefit, it is important to receive each scheduled dose of this medication as directed. If you miss a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist right away to establish a new dosing schedule.
Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.
Information last revised July 2016.
Copyright(c) 2016 First Databank, Inc.
Conditions of use: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information in not intend to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects nor should it be construed in indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.