Megace (Megestrol)

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Brand name: Megace, Megace ESMEGACE

Generic name:Megestrol  

Other names: Megestrol Acetate 

Therapeutic Class: progesterone

Manufacturer / Distributor: Bristol-Myers Squibb

Availability:   Megace is available by prescription only

Indications : Megace is used to treat the following cancers:


  • advanced breast cancer
  • prostate cancer
  • Advanced endometrial cancer (also called uterine cancer).

Megace is also used to treat malnutrition, loss of appetite and weight loss in patients with AIDS. That is, by using Megace, you can have your appetite and weight increased.


Dosage form: Megace comes as a tablet, a suspension (liquid) and a concentrated suspension (called Megace ES) to take by mouth.

Dosage: to prescribe a dose of Megace which is able to fight your disease, your doctor will consider the type of medical condition you have, your health status (presence of other diseases or not), and your body surface area (BSA). If you are taking other medication (s), you can be prescribed a lower dosage of Megace.

In the case of breast cancer, your oncologist may recommend you to take three or four doses of 40 mg of Megace daily with or without food; usually the maximum dose is 160 mg per day. For cancer of the endometrium, the usual dose is 80 to 320 mg per day, which can be divided into doses of 40 to 80 mg administered 1-4 times per day; or one or two 160 mg tablet per day with or without food. Usually, the recommended dose in the treatment of prostate cancer is a single dose of 120 mg daily, combined with diethylstilbestrol. It is important that you take the medication around the same time every day.

In some cases, your doctor can indicate different doses. It is necessary that you follow the indications exactly throughout the treatment. If you experience serious side effects or complications, contact your doctor immediately.  Do not change or stop taking the medication without first consulting your doctor.

Always shake the liquid well before using it.

Talk to your doctor or pharmacist for information on the use of Megace in the treatment of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).

Storage:  store Megace at room temperature, away from direct sunlight, moisture and heat above 40 ° C. Keep Megace out of the reach of children. Do not store Megace and allmedications in the bathroom. Megace and all other medications should not be used beyond the expiration date printed on the container.

Overdose:  Do not take Megace more often than prescribed by your doctor.  As with any drug, persistent overdose can be dangerous. If you think you have taken an overdose of Megace, contact your doctor or a poison control center near you as soon as possible.

Missing dose: do your best to take Megace as indicated by your doctor or pharmacist. In case you forget to take a dose, take the missed one as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, do not double the next dose to recover the missed one; it can be dangerous. Contact your doctor or wait to go back to your regular schedule.

Contraindication: Megace is contraindicated or should be used with precautions in case of the following conditions :

  • pregnancy
  •  breast-feeding
  •  galactosemia
  •  hepatic porphyria (liver disease)
  • allergy to Megace or one of its ingredients
  • glucose galactose malabsorption (GGM)
  • Congenital lactase deficiency.


Tell your doctor is you have a history of stroke, diabetes, kidney or liver disease, and blood clot.


Mechanism of action (MOA): Megace is a progesterone; it slows or stops the multiplication of cancer cells in the prostate by inhibiting the production of testosterone in the body. In the treatment of breast or endometrial cancer, Megace interfering with other hormones and proteins necessary for the division of the cancer cells.

Interactions:  talk you to your doctor before taking aspirin, vitamins, nutritional supplements or St. John wort. Some medications can interact with Megace . Tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any medication.

Side effects: in certain patients, Megace can lead to the following side effects:dizziness,mild headache, increased blood pressure, mood swings, rapid or unusual weight gain,nervousness, flushing, gas or bloating, decreased sexual desire, unexpected vaginal bleeding,sleep problems, lack of energy, breast tenderness or pain, and appearance of brown spots on sun-exposed skin.

If the side effects above persist for weeks, contact your oncologist. In addition, contact your doctor if you experience any of these symptoms:

  • vision changes
  • anxiety
  • confusion
  • slow speech
  • fast or irregular heartbeat
  •  excessive sweating, mainly at night
  •  purple, blue, or black discoloration of the skin
  •  extreme hunger
  •  leg pain
  •  difficulty breathing
  •  chest pain or heaviness in chest
  •  weakness or numbness of an arm or leg
  •  pain or swelling in the abdomen
  • Swelling of face, ankles or feet.

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One comment

  1. My husband has prostrate cancer and has not eaten in 4 weeks . He was given a prescription for Megace ES625mg/5ml oral suspension in the hospital emergency room. Because of his age the insurance required a
    prier approval from the doctor. the pharmacy could not reach the dr.
    The family decided to pay for the Megestrol since the insurance would refund the money when the dr. gave her approval. Our cancer dr. would not give her approval because it could cause blood clots in people with cancer.
    we are left with the medication that cost us $544.00 . WE are afraid to continue given him the medication. We need more information . Can you help.

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