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Leuprolide Acetate

Leuprolide Acetate

About Leuprolide acetate

Leuprolide acetate (Lupron Depot®) is a type of gonadotropin–releasing hormone agonist (GnRH agonist) medicine. GnRH agonist medications help to lower pelvic pain caused by endometriosis. Add–back therapy is the addition of a small amount of the hormones estrogen and progesterone or progesterone alone. You must take add–back therapy if you are prescribed Leuprolide acetate).

How does Leuprolide acetate work?

This medication works by shutting off hormones made by your ovaries, so your estrogen (one of the hormones that cause your body to have periods) level is lowered. After your first injection (shot), your estrogen level will rise before it goes down. This is called an “estrogen surge”. Because of this rise in estrogen, you may have an increase in your symptoms for a few weeks. After the estrogen surge, your estrogen levels will go down. This temporarily stops your period. When you do not have periods, endometriosis symptoms are usually relieved.

How is Leuprolide acetate given?

Leuprolide acetate is an injection. It is very important to get your injection on time. Missed doses can cause breakthrough bleeding and the return of pain.

How long can I take Leuprolide acetate with add–back ?

Leuprolide acetate alone is usually prescribed for 6 months (1 shot every 3 months). However, when you take it with add–back, you can almost always stay on it longer. After a few months of treatment you will have an appointment with your gynecologist to see if the medicine is helping you. This appointment also gives your doctor a chance to ask you about your pelvic pain and any other symptoms you may be having. If your symptoms are better, he may suggest that you continue taking the medicine.

Lupron side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction to Lupron: (hives, difficult breathing, swelling in your face or throat) or a severe skin reaction (fever, sore throat, burning in your eyes, skin pain, red or purple skin rash that spreads and causes blistering and peeling).

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • bone pain, loss of movement in any part of your body
  • swelling, rapid weight gain
  • a seizure
  • unusual changes in mood or behavior (crying spells, anger, feeling irritable)
  • sudden chest pain or discomfort, wheezing, dry cough or hack
  • painful or difficult urination 

Lupron and Alcohol

Both Lupron and alcohol can cause upset stomach, nausea, and dizziness.

Drinking alcohol while using Lupron may worsen these effects.

Avoid or limit drinking alcohol while taking Lupron.

Lupron and Grapefruit Juice

Scientists aren’t certain how the body processes Lupron or whether it breaks down Lupron the same way it does grapefruit juice.

To be safe, avoid grapefruit or the juice while being treated with Lupron.