This is a combination medication consisting of estradiol and norethindrone acetate. Estradiol belongs to the estrogen class of medications while norethindrone acetate is classified as a progestin. The medication is indicated for oral hormone replacement therapy in women experiencing menopausal and vaginal symptoms. It is formulated for women who have not undergone a hysterectomy, as progestin is necessary in conjunction with estrogen to prevent complications such as endometrial hyperplasia which may arise from using estrogen alone.
Uses and Dosage
Administer this medication orally, with or without food, in accordance with your physician’s instructions, typically once daily. To minimize gastrointestinal discomfort, it may be taken with or immediately following a meal.
The dosage is contingent on your medical condition and response to therapy. Consistently consume this medication to attain maximum efficacy. To facilitate recollection, take it at the same time every day. Adhere closely to your dosing regimen and do not augment your dose or take it more frequently or for a longer duration than directed.
Notify your physician if your condition does not improve or deteriorates.
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention:
- back/neck pain
- bloating or gas
- breast tenderness
- changes in menstrual flow
- darkened skin (chloasma)
- discomfort wearing contact lenses
- fluid retention
- hot flushes
- increased body hair
- irregular vaginal bleeding (in the first 3 months)
- leg cramps
- menstrual pain
- muscle aches
- vaginal itching with or without discharge
- weight gain or loss
Inform your healthcare provider immediately if you experience any serious side effects:
- abdominal pain
- breast lumps
- breast pain
- change in vaginal discharge
- discoloration of skin and mucous membranes
- discharge from nipple
- easy bruising, many or prolonged, exceptionally heavy periods
- endometrial thickening (e.g., abnormal vaginal bleeding, vaginal discharge)
- increased blood pressure
- migraine headache
- painful reddish skin growths
- rapid weight gain
- signs of depression
- swelling of the arms, feet, or lower legs
- unexpected vaginal bleeding (after you have been taking this medication for 6 months)
- vaginal infections
- rapid pulse or dizziness
- rash with target-shaped reddening or sores
- signs of a serious allergic reaction (e.g., abdominal cramps, difficulty breathing, nausea and vomiting, or swelling of the face and throat)
Prior to taking this medication, inform your physician or pharmacist if you have any allergies to it or any other substances. This product may include inert ingredients that could potentially cause allergic reactions or other issues.
Before using this medication, notify your physician or pharmacist of your medical history, especially if you have experienced vaginal bleeding of unknown origin, specific cancers (such as uterine, ovarian, or breast cancer), stroke, blood clots, heart disease, liver or kidney disease, family history of breast cancer, blood clotting disorders, high blood pressure, diabetes, high blood cholesterol/triglyceride levels, obesity, lupus, underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism), mineral imbalance (high or low blood calcium levels), hormone disorders, uterus issues, gallbladder disease, asthma, seizures, migraine headaches, certain blood disorders (porphyria), or mental/mood disorders.
Do not use tobacco or smoke. Smoking in combination with estrogen increases the risk of stroke, blood clots, high blood pressure, and heart attack, particularly in women over the age of 35.
Notify your physician if you have recently undergone or are scheduled to undergo surgery, or if you will be immobilized for a prolonged period. These circumstances raise the risk of blood clots, especially when using estrogen products. You may need to discontinue this medication temporarily or take special precautions.
This medication may cause discolored, darkened patches on your skin and face (melasma). Exposure to sunlight may exacerbate this condition. Limit your time spent in the sun, avoid tanning beds and lamps, and use sunscreen and protective clothing when outdoors.
Individuals who are nearsighted or wear contact lenses may experience visual difficulties or issues with their contact lenses while taking this medication.
This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy. If you become pregnant or suspect that you may be pregnant, inform your doctor immediately.
This medication is excreted in breast milk and may decrease the quantity and quality of milk produced. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.
Form and Strength
Activella is available in the following forms and strengths:
estradiol and norethindrone tablet:
Can Activella cause weight gain?
Up to 9% of people taking Activella reported weight gain.
How quickly does HRT make you feel better?
It usually takes a few weeks before you feel the benefits of HRT. It can take up to 3 months to feel the full effects.