[Skip navigation] FDA Logo links to FDA home page
Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, U.S. Food and Drug Administration U.S. Food and Drug Administration Center for Drug Evaluation and Research
  HHS Logo links to Department of Health and Human Services website

FDA Home Page | CDER Home Page | CDER Site Info | Contact CDER | What's New @ CDER

horizonal rule
CDER Home About CDER Drug Information Regulatory Guidance CDER Calendar Specific Audiences CDER Archives
Powered by Google

 Estrogen and Estrogen with Progestin Therapies
for Postmenopausal Women

The Food and Drug Administration has received requests from the public to provide updated product information for estrogen- and progestin-containing drug products used for treating postmenopausal symptoms. Information from the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) trial about estrogens and progestins continues to have significant public health implications for postmenopausal women. As the series of new study results from the WHI become available, we are encouraging manufacturers to update their labels for estrogen- and progestin-containing drug products for postmenopausal women to include new information from these studies. This information will allow individuals to understand the risks and benefits of these products and make appropriate health care decisions. This web page lists products with approved updated labeling that includes the important information from the WHI studies.

On May 31, 2002, the WHI study of conjugated estrogens 0.625 mg/day, plus medroxyprogesterone acetate 2.5 mg/day in postmenopausal women was stopped after a mean of 5.2 years of follow-up because the test statistic for invasive breast cancer exceeded the stopping boundary for this adverse effect and the global index statistic supported risks exceeding benefits.  Data on the major clinical outcomes through April 30, 2002, regarding increased risks for invasive breast cancer, heart attacks, strokes, and venous thromboembolism rates, including pulmonary embolism, became available July 17, 2002.  These data were updated March 17, 2003.  The Women’s Health Initiative Memory Study (WHIMS), a substudy of the WHI, recently concluded that women treated in the study with conjugated estrogens 0.625mg combined with medroxyprogesterone acetate 2.5mg have a greater risk of developing probable dementia than those on placebo.   

Detailed information about the Women's Health Initiative and the Women's Health Initiative Memory Study is available at the National Institute of Health's Menopausal Hormone Replacement Information web site www.nih.gov/PHTindex.htm.

Updated Labeling for Estrogen and Estrogen-Progestin Products for Postmenopausal Women*

*The following products have FDA-approved labeling that includes information from WHI studies.  Not all of the WHI studies are completed yet.  As more information becomes available, labeling for these products will be updated and added to this site.

FDA Press Releases

Guidances for Industry

  • Federal Register; Notice of Availability. [TXT] [PDF]
  • Draft Guidance: Labeling Guidance for Noncontraceptive Estrogen Drug Products for the Treatment of Vasomotor Symptoms and Vulvar and Vaginal Atrophy Symptoms — Prescribing Information for Health Care Providers and Patient Labeling.  [HTML] or [PDF]
  • Draft Guidance: Estrogen and Estrogen/Progestin Drug Products to Treat Vasomotor Symptoms and Vulvar and Vaginal Atrophy Symptoms — Recommendations for Clinical Evaluation.  [HTML] or [PDFPDF - requires free Adobe Acrobat Reader]

Consumer Information

Other Resources for Women’s Health Information

  • FDA Office of Women's Health
  • Women's Health Initiative, National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI),
  • Hormone Replacement Therapy. U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, Update, 2002 Release.
  • Risks and Benefits of Estrogen Plus Progestin in Healthy Postmenopausal Women. JAMA, July 17, 2002; 288(3): 321-333. Abstract
  • Estrogen Plus Progestin and the Incidence of Dementia and Mild Cognitive Impairment in Postmenopausal Women: The Women's Health Initiative Memory Study: A Randomized Controlled Trial, JAMA, May 2003; 289(20): 2651-2662. Abstract 9 No. 20, May 28, 200

Some files require the free PDF Adobe Acrobat Reader. PDF - requires free Adobe Acrobat Reader

Back to Top     Back to Drug Info

Date created: January 8, 2003; Updated: January 16, 2008

horizonal rule