megestrol (generic name)

It suspension improves appetite and helps cause weight gain
(me JES trol)
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What is this medicine?

MEGESTROL (me JES trol) suspension improves appetite and helps cause weight gain. It is used in conditions that cause significant loss of appetite and weight, such as AIDS.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • adrenal gland problems
  • history of blood clots of the legs, lungs, or other parts of the body
  • diabetes
  • kidney disease
  • liver disease
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to megestrol, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

Take this medicine by mouth. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Shake well before using. Use a specially marked spoon or container to measure your medicine. Ask your pharmacist if you do not have one. Household spoons are not accurate. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed. Do not stop taking except on your doctor's advice.

Contact your pediatrician or health care provider regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss or forget a single dose, continue with your next regularly scheduled dose on the next day. Do not take double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medicine?

Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications:
  • dofetilide

This medicine may also interact with the following medications:

  • carbamazepine
  • indinavir
  • phenobarbital
  • phenytoin
  • primidone
  • rifampin
  • warfarin

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Visit your doctor or health care professional for regular checks on your progress. It may take up to 3 weeks to first notice an improved appetite. It may take up to 12 weeks to notice weight gain.

If you are a female of child-bearing age, use an effective method of birth control while you are taking this medicine. This medicine should not be used by females who are pregnant or breast-feeding. There is a potential for serious side effects to an unborn child or to an infant. Talk to your health care professional or pharmacist for more information.

This medicine may affect blood sugar levels. If you have diabetes, check with your doctor or health care professional before you change your diet or the dose of your diabetic medicine.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • chest pain
  • dizziness
  • fluid retention
  • increased blood pressure
  • leg pain or swelling
  • nausea, vomiting
  • weakness

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • breakthrough menstrual bleeding
  • diarrhea
  • gas
  • hot flashes or flushing
  • sexual difficulties in men

Where should I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store at room temperature between 15 and 25 degrees C (59 and 77 degrees F). Keep tightly closed. Protect from heat. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Last Updated: July 06, 2009
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