Megace ES is a medication that comes as a liquid and is taken once daily to help stimulate appetite and cause weight gain in people with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Side effects may include headaches, diarrhea, and a rash. Make sure your healthcare provider knows if you have a history of a blood clot or stroke before taking Megace ES.
What Is Megace ES?
Megace® ES (megestrol ES) is a prescription medication approved for the treatment of loss of appetite, malnutrition, and unexplained, significant weight loss in people with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). It is a synthetic (laboratory-made) derivative of the naturally occurring hormone progesterone.
Megace ES is an extra-strength form of the medication Megace® (megestrol) oral suspension. This means Megace ES contains more of the active ingredient megestrol acetate per mL than Megace oral suspension. As a result, lower doses of Megace ES can be given to produce the same effects.
Megace also comes in a tablet form. The tablet form of Megace is approved to relieve the symptoms of advanced breast and endometrial cancer (cancer of the lining of the uterus). Brand-name Megace tablets have been discontinued by the manufacturer and are no longer available in the United States. However, they are still available in generic form.
Megace ES is made by Par Pharmaceutical, Inc. Regular Megace oral suspension is made by Bristol-Myers Squibb Company.
How Does Megace ES Work?
Megace ES belongs to a class of medicines known as progestins. It is related to the naturally occurring hormone progesterone. In clinical studies, Megace ES was shown to stimulate appetite and cause weight gain. It is unknown how the medication works to cause these actions. However, it can be used to treat weight loss because of these side effects.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Megace ES [package insert]. Spring Valley, NY: Par Pharmaceutical, Inc.;2009 July.
Megace ES Web site. Available at: http://www.megacees.com/. Accessed April 26, 2012.
Megestrol Acetate. Drug Facts and Comparisons. Drug Facts and Comparisons 4.0 [online]. 2012. Available from Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. Accessed April 20, 2012.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed April 19, 2012.
Nilsson S, Nygren KG, Johansson ED. Megestrol acetate concentrations in plasma and milk during administration of an oral contraceptive containing 4 mg megestrol acetate to nursing women. Contraception 1977; 16 (6): 615-624.
National Library of Medicine (US). Hazardous Substances Data Bank (HSDB). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?HSDB. Accessed April 20, 2012.
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