Aygestin (Norethisterone) – What It Is, Uses, Dosage, Interactions, and Side Effects

Many women use Aygestin (Norethisterone) to treat several conditions related to abnormal uterine bleeding and other conditions caused by hormonal imbalance. These conditions usually affect mature women due to change in their body hormones as they become older. The changes are usually characterized by several symptoms which include excessive bleeding, irregular periods, and other symptoms. Allowing the condition to carryon for a prolonged period is risky since it may lead to irreversible damage to the uterus or excessive loss of blood and this is the reason women are advised to seek medical help as soon as they detect the symptoms however mild they may be.

A Brief on Norethisterone/ Aygestin

aygestinNorethisterone comes under the generic name of Norethindrone acetate and is mostly known by its brand name, Aygestin. However, depending on the region, the drug also comes under other brand names which include Gestakadin, Norlutate, Primolut, Monogest, Milligynon, Sovel and Styptin among other names. It is a progestin- based steroid that has antigonadotropic characteristics meaning it contains both antiestrogen and antiandrogen which play an important role in hormonal contraceptives. Norethisterone, an acetate ester is indicated for use in stopping abnormal bleedings in the uterus and other related conditions such as endometriosis and amenorrhea.

How Norethindrone Acetate Works

Norethindrone acetate which comes in form of a tablet is a synthetic progestin that seeks to help cure abnormal uterine bleeding and other issues caused by hormone imbalance in women. It contains the same chemical compounds found in Progestine steroids and helps in stopping the production of gonadotropin by the pituitary gland. Its working is similar to that of progesterone which prevents women from ovulating. Progestin is steroid hormones that have the same effect as progesterone. Norethindrone works by stopping gonadotropin production from the pituitary gland, leading to prevention of ovulation in females. Unusual bleeding (either too much, too little, or prolonged bleeding) happens when the hormones get out of balance. Norethindrone Acetate seeks to restore the hormonal imbalance.

Conditions Treated Using Aygestin (Norethisterone)

Norethindrone was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in April 1982 and is used to treat abnormal uterine bleeding. Aygestin is also used to treat secondary amenorrhea (woman doesn’t experience menstrual periods because of low production of specific hormones), as well as endometriosis (endometrial tissue appearing on the outer region of the uterus). All these conditions are caused by hormonal imbalance and apart from erratic or unusual bleeding; a victim may also experience pain especially in the pelvic region. More mature women are most prone to experiencing the effects.


The recommended dosage for Norethindrone Acetate tablets is determined by the examining physician and the right quantity ranges from 2.5mg up to 10mg per day. The tablet is taken orally with water once a day for a period of 5 to 10 days within the half cycle of the menstruation period. It can be taken with or without food but should be consumed at the same each day.

The medication is given under prescription and a healthcare provider will run tests to see any likely interactions. People suffering from blood clots, blood vessel disease, diabetes, breast, vaginal, or cervical cancer, heart disease, liver disease, kidney disease, mental depression, seizures, strokes, migraines, vaginal bleeding, pregnant women should first seek medical advice.

Aygestin (Norethisterone) Interactions

Norethisterone acetateAygestin is known to have interactions with certain antibiotics (rifampin, rifapentine, rifabutin, and griseofulvin) as well as tetracyclines or penicillins. It also may react with medicines such as bosentan, fosamprenavir or amprenavir, aprepitant, barbiturate medicines, carbamazepine, modafinil, felbamate, oxcarbazepine, ritonavir, phenytoin, St. John's wort, topiramate and many others. Before starting to use the medication it is paramount to let the physician know the medications, non-prescription drugs, herbs, or dietary supplements you are currently using so as to determine any likely interactions. A soon-to-be user should also state whether he takes alcohol, drinks, or uses illegal drugs.

Side Effects

Using Norethisterone acetate can come with several side effects some of which can be severe and need immediate medical attention. Sexual desire changes, menstrual flow changes, growth of facial hair, headache, swelling, fluid retention, irritability, nausea, weight gain or loss are some of the mild effects. More worrying side effects include discharge from the uterus, breast tenderness, abdominal and chest pains, severe headache, yellowing of the eyes, pain in the legs or groin, skin rashes, skin yellowing, hives, shortness of breath, itching, unusual fatigue, problems with speech and vision.

Seeking medical advice, following the recommended dosage, and monitoring the side effects is vital to enjoying the benefits of Aygestin (Norethisterone) and lessening the side effects.