Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Agonist (GnRH-a) for Severe PMS
Goserelin is injected into the fat tissue of the belly.
Leuprolide is given as a shot under the skin or as a shot in the muscle.
Nafarelin is a nasal spray.
How It Works
Gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRH-a) medicines reduce the amount of estrogen in the body and prevent the release of eggs from the ovaries (ovulation). This stops the monthly menstrual hormonal cycle and results in a condition similar to menopause.
Why It Is Used
On the rare occasion that a woman is considering removal of the ovaries (oophorectomy), GnRH-a treatment is used beforehand. If GnRH-a treatment relieves symptoms, then removal of the ovaries is likely to provide complete relief from PMS. But even if symptoms improve during GnRH-a treatment, it is possible that the medicine is not the reason for the improvement.
A GnRH-a may be used only for short periods of time (3 to 6 months).
How Well It Works
When effective, GnRH-a treatment almost completely ends physical and psychological PMS or PMDD symptoms. (The effectiveness of the nafarelin nasal spray can be hard to predict.) But GnRH-a side effects are usually severe.
All medicines have side effects. But many people don't feel the side effects, or they are able to deal with them. Ask your pharmacist about the side effects of each medicine you take. Side effects are also listed in the information that comes with your medicine.
Here are some important things to think about:
Call your doctor if you have:
Common side effects of this medicine include:
See Drug Reference for a full list of side effects. (Drug Reference is not available in all systems.)
What To Think About
These medicines are given as a shot or a nasal spray. You will get instructions on how to give the shot or use the nasal spray. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions about how to take your medicine correctly.
Medicine is one of the many tools your doctor has to treat a health problem. Taking medicine as your doctor suggests will improve your health and may prevent future problems. If you don't take your medicines properly, you may be putting your health (and perhaps your life) at risk.
There are many reasons why people have trouble taking their medicine. But in most cases, there is something you can do. For suggestions on how to work around common problems, see the topic Taking Medicines as Prescribed.
Advice for women
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
eMedicineHealth Medical Reference from Healthwise
To learn more visit Healthwise.org
© 1995-2014 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
- Early Care for Your Premature Baby
- What to Eat When You Have Cancer
- When to Take More Pain Medication