What is Evista?
Evista is used to both prevent and treat osteoporosis in menopausal women. Evista tablets contain the active ingredient raloxifene, which is a type of medicine called a selective oestrogen receptor modulator (SERM). It mimics the natural effects of oestrogen, but is not a hormone. Evista reverses the excessive breakdown of bone that happens at menopause and causes an increase in bone mineral density, making bones stronger. Evista is a prescription-only medicine.
What is Evista used for?
Osteoporosis, a decrease in bone mass and density, is one of the most common symptoms in menopausal and post-menopausal women. Declining levels of oestrogen can lead to a loss of bone density. This may lead to the development of osteoporosis - a condition in which bones and vertebra are weak and bone fractures become more common. Evista increases calcium absorption, making bones stronger.
Evista has been shown to significantly reduce the risk of bone fractures and collapse of a vertebra. It is not effective at relieving other symptoms of oestrogen deficiency that occur during menopause, for example hot flashes and night sweats.
How to use Evista
Evista tablets come in convenient blister calendar packs marked with the days of the week. The tablets should be taken at the same time each day with some water. They can be taken with or without food. If you have forgotten to take your dose of Evista, you may take the missed dose unless it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Never take a double dose to make up for the forgotten one. Make sure your diet includes plenty of calcium (dairy products) and vitamin D (margarine, meat, sunlight) while you are being treated with Evista. If necessary, the doctor can prescribe a calcium and/or vitamin preparation. For more information, see the package leaflet.
Unless otherwise advised by the doctor, the usual dose in adult women is:
- one 60-mg tablet once daily.
Do not exceed the recommended dose and read the package leaflet closely before use.
Evista can cause side effects such as:
- Hot flashes (especially common during the first six months of treatment);
- Flu-like symptoms;
- Stomach ache, nausea, vomiting and other gastrointestinal symptoms;
- Leg cramps;
- Swelling of the hands, feet and ankles due to excess fluid retention. [/il]
Consult a doctor if the side effects are severe or persistent. For a complete list of possible side effects, see the package leaflet.
When not to use Evista
Evista is not suitable for everyone and should not be used if:
- You are allergic to raloxifene or any other ingredient in this medicine;
- You are still capable of becoming pregnant;
- You have a known or past history of thrombosis, liver disease or decreased kidney function;
- You have endometrial cancer;
- You have vaginal bleeding of unknown cause.
Consult a doctor before using Evista if you have a health condition that is not listed above. Evista may interact with other medicines. It is therefore important that you tell the doctor what other medicines or nutritional supplements you are currently taking, so that he/she can advise on potential drug interactions.
This medicine is intended for women who are no longer in the fertile age bracket. Women who don’t fall within this group should not use Evista if pregnant or breastfeeding.
Evista does not interact with alcohol or interfere with your ability to drive safely.