Megestrol is used to treat breast and womb cancer. This medicine may also be used to treat anorexia (loss of appetite) and cachexia (weakness of the body due to a severe chronic disease).
This medicine may be used to treat other conditions as decided by your doctor.
Take Megestrol exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist about whether you should take this medicine with or without food. Some brands of this medicine may be taken differently. Try to take it at the same time each day.
If you are taking an oral suspension, shake the bottle well before you take it to ensure that the liquid is evenly mixed. Use the measuring spoon or cup provided to measure out your prescribed dose.
Megestrol must be taken regularly for it to be effective. Continue taking this medicine even when you feel better. Do not stop taking it unless instructed by the doctor.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your normal dosing schedule.
DO NOT double a dose under any circumstances.
If you often forget to take your medicine, let your doctor and pharmacist know.
Do not take this medicine if you are pregnant or planning to have a baby soon. If you become pregnant while being treated with Megestrol, alert your doctor immediately. This medicine may cause harm to your unborn child. You must use proven birth control methods while taking Megestrol.
Do not breastfeed while being treated with this medicine.
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
- blood clot disorder
- severe liver disease
- porphyria (an inherited disorder that may cause skin or nervous system abnormalities)
For as long as you are taking Megestrol, your blood pressure, glucose level, weight or any signs of blood clot must be monitored regularly to check your body's response to the medicine. Your doctor will advise you about how often you will need to have these tests.
Megestrol may cause any of the following side effects: nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea or constipation, stomach wind, weight gain, increase in blood sugar level, rashes, weakness and difficulty breathing.
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any of these medicines:
- other medicines to treat cancer e.g. aminoglutethimide
- medicines used in organ transplant or certain immune disorders e.g. ciclosporin
- medicines for HIV infection e.g. indinavir
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Megestrol.
Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicines, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
Store in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children.
Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.
As this is a cancer medicine, always return any unused or expired tablets or oral suspension to the clinic, hospital or pharmacy for disposal. Do not throw it away in the household waste.