Name: Vagifem


Estrogens, either used alone or with another hormone (progestin), have rarely caused very serious side effects. Discuss the risks and benefits of hormone treatment with your doctor. Estrogens should not be used to prevent heart disease or dementia.

Estrogens can increase the risk of cancer of the uterus (endometrial cancer). Taking a progestin as directed by your doctor can help decrease this risk. Tell your doctor right away if you have any unusual vaginal bleeding.

In postmenopausal women, estrogens can increase the risk of cancer of the ovaries, stroke, dementia, and serious blood clots in the legs. Estrogens alone do not appear to increase the risk of breast cancer when used for up to 7 years. Estrogen, when used with a progestin, can increase the risk of heart disease (such as heart attacks), stroke, serious blood clots in the lungs/legs, dementia, and cancer of the breast/ovaries.

The risk for serious side effects may depend on the dose of estrogen and the length of time it is used. Therefore, this medication should be used at the lowest effective dose and for the shortest amount of time. Discuss the use of this medication with your doctor and check with him/her regularly (for example, every 3 to 6 months) to see if you still need to take this medication. If you will be taking this medication long-term, you should have regular complete physical exams (for example, once a year) as directed by your doctor. See also Notes section.

What is estradiol vaginal (local) (estrace vaginal, estring, vagifem)?

Estradiol is a form of estrogen, a female sex hormone that regulates many processes in the body.

Some estradiol products placed directly into the vagina are used for "local" treatment of vaginal menopause symptoms involving the secretions and surrounding tissues of the vagina. Other vaginal estradiol products are used for treating menopause symptoms affecting the vagina as well as other parts of the body (such as hot flashes). This type of vaginal estradiol has "systemic" effects, meaning that it can affect parts of the body other than where the medicine is placed or applied.

The information in this leaflet is specific to estradiol vaginal products that are used for local treatment of symptoms. Estradiol vaginal (local) is used to treat vaginal symptoms of menopause such as dryness, burning, and itching. Estradiol vaginal also reduces urgency or irritation of urination.

Estradiol should not be used to prevent heart disease, stroke, or dementia, because this medicine may actually increase your risk of developing these conditions.

Estradiol vaginal (local) may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What happens if i miss a dose (estrace vaginal, estring, vagifem)?

Use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose. Remove the vaginal ring and insert a new one as soon as you remember. Do not use an extra vaginal ring to make up the missed wearing time.

  • Menopause

Side Effects of Vagifem

Serious side effects have been reported with Vagifem. See the “Vagifem Precautions” section.

Common side effects of Vagifem include the following:

  • Upper respiratory tract infection
  • Stomach pain
  • Back pain
  • Itching of the vagina
  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Breast pain
  • Irregular vaginal bleeding or spotting
  • Stomach or abdominal cramps, bloating
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Hair loss
  • Fluid retention
  • Vaginal yeast infection

This is not a complete list of Vagifem side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Vagifem Interactions

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Especially tell your doctor if you take:

  • Amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone)
  • Antifungals such as itraconazole (Sporanox) and ketoconazole (Nizoral)
  • Aprepitant (Emend)
  • Carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Epitol, Tegretol)
  • Cimetidine (Tagamet)
  • Clarithromycin (Biaxin)
  • Cyclosporine (Neoral, Sandimmune)
  • Dexamethasone (Decadron, Dexpak)
  • Diltiazem (Cardizem, Dilacor, Tiazac, others)
  • Erythromycin (E.E.S, Erythrocin)
  • Fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem)
  • Fluvoxamine (Luvox)
  • Griseofulvin (Fulvicin, Grifulvin, Gris-PEG)
  • Lovastatin (Altocor, Mevacor)
  • Medications for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) such as atazanavir (Reyataz), delaviridine (Rescriptor), efavirenz (Sustiva), indinavir (Crixivan), lopinavir (in Kaletra), nelfinavir (Viracept), nevirapine (Viramune), ritonavir (Norvir, in Kaletra), and saquinavir (Fortovase, Invirase)
  • Medications for thyroid disease
  • Nefazodone
  • Other medications that contain estrogen
  • Phenobarbital
  • Phenytoin (Dilantin, Phenytek); rifabutin (Mycobutin)
  • Rifampin (Rifadin, Rimactane, in Rifamate)
  • Sertraline (Zoloft)
  • Troleandomycin (TAO)
  • Verapamil (Calan, Covera, Isoptin, Verelan)
  • Zafirlukast (Accolate)
  • St. John's Wort

This is not a complete list of Vagifem drug interactions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Vagifem Precautions

Serious side effects have been reported with Vagifem including the following:

  • bulging eyes
  • yellowing of the skin or eyes
  • itching
  • loss of appetite
  • fever
  • joint pain
  • stomach tenderness, pain, or swelling
  • movements that are difficult to control
  • hives
  • rash or blisters on the skin
  • swelling, of the eyes, face, lips, tongue, throat, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
  • hoarseness
  • wheezing
  • difficulty breathing or swallowing

Do not take Vagifem if you:

  • are allergic to Vagifem or to any of its ingredients
  • have abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • have a known or suspected history of breast cancer
  • have a known or suspected estrogen-dependent cancer
  • currently have or have a history of blood clots
  • have had a heart attack or stroke
  • have been diagnosed with a bleeding disorder
  • have liver disease
  • are pregnant or possibly pregnant

Vagifem and Lactation

Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed.

Estrogen has been detected in human breast milk. Estrogen can decrease the quality or quantity of breast milk. Vagifem should not be used during lactation. Caution should be taken when Vagifem is given to a nursing woman.

Vagifem Overdose

If you insert too many Vagifem tablets, call your healthcare provider or local Poison Control Center, or seek emergency medical attention right away.

Indications and Usage for Vagifem


Treatment of Atrophic Vaginitis due to Menopause