Elleste Solo is a form of oestrogen-only hormone replacement therapy, marketed by Meda Pharmaceuticals. It is available as a standard tablet, and as a transdermal patch called Elleste Solo MX; both of these application methods are available in two strengths. It helps to reduce symptoms associated with menopause, and in higher doses, can also prevent the onset of osteoporosis.
- Alleviates symptoms of the menopause
- Comes as a tablet or a patch
- Can help protect against osteoporosis
As a single-hormone treatment, it should only be used by women who are undergoing the menopause but have also had a hysterectomy. Those who have not undergone this procedure will be recommended a combined form of HRT, also containing progesterone.
Most women will tend to experience the menopause during their late 40s or early 50s, although it can sometimes occur earlier or later. At this time, certain changes in the body will begin to take place, including the stopping of ovulation (the process by which the ovaries generate an egg every month) and the slowing and eventual cessation of menstrual bleeding.
During the menopause, oestrogen levels in the body will also decrease. This can lead to the onset of certain symptoms, such as headaches, hot flushes or ‘night sweats’, mood swings, difficulty sleeping, and loss of libido. Another potential consequence due to falling oestrogen levels is loss of bone strength, causing them to become weak or brittle.
For many, these symptoms will be so mild that they do not present a significant problem. But those women who feel that these effects are troubling them or disrupting their quality of life may choose to seek treatment. This is typically issued in the form of hormone replacement therapy.
Elleste Solo tablets and Elleste Solo MX patches, which are available to buy from our UK pharmacy, contain an artificial version of oestrogen called estradiol. What these treatments do is restore depleted levels of oestrogen in the body, and prevent the above-described symptoms from happening. In cases where a person might be more susceptible to weakened bones or osteoporosis, then a stronger dose may be prescribed to offer protection.
Follow the instructions issued by your prescriber when applying this treatment, and make sure you read the guidelines in the patient information leaflet fully prior to use. This will help you to get the best possible results from your medication, and lower the risk of side effects.
- Take according to your doctor’s instructions.
For Elleste Solo tablets, 1 or 2 mg:
- This will be one tablet a day, taken at the same time continuously.
- If you are still experiencing bleeding, it is best to commence treatment on the first day of your period.
- If bleeding has stopped, then this pill can be started anytime.
- Swallow tablets whole, with water if necessary. Do not chew or break them up before consumption.
- If you miss a dose, try to take it when you remember, within 12 hours of your scheduled time. If this is not possible because your next dose is due within the next 12 hours, skip the pill you have missed and carry on the course as normal.
- Never exceed the amount your doctor has prescribed for you.
For Elleste Solo MX Transdermal Patch, 40 or 80 mg:
- This will be one patch, twice a week.
- If you are still having periods, then you should aim to start treatment within 5 days of your usual bleed.
- If you have stopped having periods, you can start using it right away.
- Apply the patch to a dry, intact area of skin, such as the lower back or buttocks.
- When you apply your next patch, make sure you do so on a fresh area of skin.
- Replace the patch every three to four days, but always on the same days each week.
- If you forget to change your patch, do so as soon as you remember. Afterwards, make sure you continue the course as normal.
Those who are switching to this product from another form of HRT should consult their doctor prior to use. Refer to the more detailed instructions in the patient information leaflet before starting this treatment.
It is essential to report any side effects you experience to your doctor. Some of these may necessitate urgent medical advice. These include any signs of: a blood clot; heart attack; stroke; an allergic reaction; memory loss if using over the age of 65; endometrial hyperplasia; or breast, cervical or ovarian cancer.
Very common (1 in 10 people or more):
Tender breasts, breakthrough bleeding, or headaches.
Common (1 in 10 people or less):
Mild irritation at the site of application if using a patch, feeling or being sick, stomach cramps, growth of fibroids in the womb, fluctuations in weight, swelling in the legs, mood swings, or changes in sex drive.
Uncommon (1 in 100 people or less):
Indigestion, flatulence, gallstones, dizziness, migraine, vaginal thrush, increase in blood pressure, or leg cramps.
Rare (1 in 1,000 people or less):
Hair loss, itching, or rash.
Please note that the above is only a selection of the side effects associated with these products, and that they may differ in frequency and nature in relation to the method (tablet or patch) you use. For more detailed information, please refer to the leaflets provided.
Taking it with other medicines
Elleste Solo may not be suitable for use in conjunction with the following: sedatives; treatments for Parkinson’s; drugs for epilepsy such as phenytoin, phenobarbital or carbamazepin; drugs for tuberculosis such as rifampicin or rifabutin; antivirals for HIV, for instance nevirapine, efavirenz, ritonavir or nelfinavir; or St John’s Wort.
Conditions to look out for
Those who have or have ever had the following should not use this product: breast cancer; any type of cancer which is sensitive to oestrogens; unexplained vaginal bleeding; an intolerance to lactose; excessive thickening of the endometrium; a blood clot in a vein; liver disease; porphyria; any disorder affecting blood clotting; a heart attack or stroke; angina.
It may also not be suitable for people with a history of the following, or only be issued with special care in such cases: fibroids inside the womb; growth of womb lining outside the womb, or an excessive growth of the endometrial lining; any condition which increases the risk of blood clots or oestrogen-sensitive cancers; high triglycerides; otosclerosis; asthma; high blood pressure; liver disorder; diabetes; gallstones; systemic lupus erythematosus; migraines; epilepsy; or fluid retention due to cardiac or kidney problems.
When on HRT, you will need to see your doctor in person at least once yearly to make sure the treatment you are taking is performing as it should.
HRT and cancer
Read the leaflet provided for more information on HRT and cancer risk.
Pregnancy and breastfeeding
Elleste is exclusively for use in postmenopausal women. It is not to be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding. If you get pregnant while on this treatment, stop taking it and see your doctor.
Driving and using machinery
There have been no effects on driving and capacity to use machines observed in those using the treatment.
Can I still drink alcohol?
Yes. Alcohol is not thought to affect the way this product works.
Will I still be able to drive?
Yes. Your ability to drive should not be compromised. However, you should refrain from driving and let your doctor know right away if you experience any side effects which may make driving unsafe.
Can I take the medicine while pregnant?
Do not use any of the above treatments if you are pregnant, think you could be, or are breastfeeding.
How should I store it?
Keep in a safe place which does not exceed temperatures of 25°C.
Am I allergic to anything in the medicine?
Elleste Solo 1mg and 2mg tablets contain: estradiol, lactose monohydrate, maize starch, povidone, talc, magnesium stearate, macrogol 400, titanium dioxide (E171), and hypromellose (E464). Elleste Solo 2mg also contains sunset yellow (E110).
Elleste Solo MX 40 and 80 patches consist of: estradiol, acrylic adhesive, diethyltoluamide, polyester laminate and metalised polyester.
Do not use these items if you are allergic to anything contained within them.
Is it available over-the-counter?
No. You will need a prescription in order to be able to buy Elleste from our UK pharmacy. This can be obtained via completion of our medical questionnaire. Once your case has been reviewed and approved by our doctor, an electronic prescription will be generated for you.
Is it right for me?
The HRT pill or patch you use will be determined by your GP, during a face-to-face consultation. They will start a prescription for the most suitable option for you.
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