There are several alternative, non-hormonal menopause treatment options for controlling uncomfortable symptoms. These are especially useful in patients with breast cancer.
Venlafaxine (Effexor), an antidepressant related to the class of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), has been shown to decrease menopausal hot flashes. Other SSRIs can be helpful, including fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem), paroxetine (Paxil, others), citalopram (Celexa) and sertraline (Zoloft).
This drug is approved to treat seizures, but it also has been shown to significantly reduce hot flashes.
Clonidine, a pill or patch typically used to treat high blood pressure, may significantly reduce the frequency of hot flashes, but unpleasant side effects are common.
To relieve vaginal dryness, estrogen can be administered locally using a vaginal tablet, ring or cream. This treatment releases just a small amount of estrogen, which is absorbed by the vaginal tissue. It can help relieve vaginal dryness, discomfort with intercourse and some urinary symptoms.
For more information about the treatments for menopause listed above, schedule an appointment with one of our doctors at Women’s Health Associates.