Femara Drug Interactions

by on June 20, 2012

Femara is available on prescription and is used in the treatment of breast cancer in women who are postmenopausal. Femara drug interactions have been reported with various medications. Among the most common drugs to interact with Femara are oral contraceptives and various forms of hormone replacement therapy treatments (estrogen medications). The patient should always advise their doctor about other medications that they may be using for other conditions.

Significant Femara Drug Interactions

Letrozole is the active ingredient in Femara. It is classified as a non-steroidal aromatase inhibitor which means that it is used to block the production of estrogen in the body. When Femara is used with any other medication, there is the possibility that drug interactions may occur. In some cases, the Letrozole may reduce the effect of certain other medications in the body while in other situations; it may cause more of the drug to be released into the body than what is needed which can result in unwanted or even dangerous side effects. It is important for the patient to discuss the use of Femara with their doctor before using it in conjunction with any other medications or herbal supplements.

Oral Contraceptive Medications

More commonly known as the Pill, these drugs help to prevent unwanted pregnancies but can result in side effects which may include severe headaches, breast tenderness, dizziness, menstrual irregularities, vomiting, acne and weight gain. Combining oral contraceptives with Femara can result in the patient gaining more weight or experiencing more headaches than they usually do. It is also possible that these contraceptives may decrease the effectiveness of Femara. Examples of oral contraceptives which may interact with Femara may include Yaz, Cyclessa, Kariva, Ovral, Nordette, Cyclafem and Triphasil. Femara drug interactions may also occur with other oral contraceptives not mentioned here.

Patients who are using oral contraceptives should always inform their doctor prior to using Letrozole in order to reduce the possibility of experiencing any Femara drug interactions.

Hormone Replacement Medications

These drugs are normally used to treat menopausal symptoms in women and may lead to an increased risk of the patient developing heart disease, having a stroke or developing breast cancer. This is because the estrogen in these medications may lead to an increase in the development of blood clots. There is also the possibility that hormone replacement medications may reduce the effectiveness of Femara. In most cases it is not recommended that these two types of medication be combined unless previously discussed with a doctor. Examples of hormone replacement medications include, but are not limited to Alora, Vivelle and Premarin.

While Femara drug interactions do occur, not everyone may experience them. It is important for patients to advise their doctor as soon as they notice any unusual side effects while using this medication. Patients should always follow the dosage instructions from their doctor in order to experience the benefits of Femara. If any allergic reactions such as breathing difficulty or hives are experienced while using Femara, the patient should contact their doctor immediately.