Skip to content

Uterine Fibroids Health Center

Evista Stops Growth of Uterine Fibroids

Osteoporosis Drug May Offer New Alternative for Premenopausal Women
Font Size
A
A
A
By
WebMD Health News

Jan. 14, 2004 -- High doses of a drug commonly used to treat osteoporosis may help stop the growth of uterine fibroids and offer a new alternative treatment for premenopausal women with the condition.

Up to 40% of women have uterine fibroids, which are abnormal growths on the wall of the uterus. In some women, uterine fibroids can lead to pain, irregular bleeding, urinary problems, and possibly infertility.

Birth control pills can help with the pain and bleeding, but treatment options for premenopausal women with the condition are otherwise limited. Hysterectomy is the only treatment that can effectively put an end to uterine fibroids.

Estrogen is known to affect the growth of uterine fibroids. In this study, researchers examined the effects of Evista, a drug that blocks the effects of estrogen in the uterus.

Evista Stops Fibroids

The study, published in the January issue of the journal Fertility and Sterility, tested the safety and effectiveness of a high dose of Evista (180 milligrams per day) vs. no treatment in 25 premenopausal women.

After three months of treatment researchers found that treatment with Evista stopped the growth of uterine fibroids. Compared with no medical treatment, women who took Evista experienced a decrease in fibroid size of about 22%. The drug was well tolerated and no significant side effects were reported.

Evista is part of a class of drugs known as SERMs (selective estrogen receptor modulators). While Evista acts similarly to estrogen in certain parts of the body -- such as fighting osteoporosis by helping to prevent bone loss -- the drug blocks estrogen in other parts of the body, such as the uterus.

The reduction in uterine fibroid size found with Evista was slightly less than found with other drugs currently used to shrink fibroids, such as gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonists.

Today on WebMD

uterine fibroid illustration
Symptoms and treatments.
uterus and ovary
Is location in the uterus a factor?
 
doctor holding model of female reproductive system
Surgical options for fibroids.
pregnant woman
Can complications occur?
 
Period Cramping Your Style
Article
uterus and inlay of fibroids
Article
 
woman talking to doctor
Article
Comparing Birth Control Pill
Article
 
woman sitting on floor in pain
Article
woman looking at ultrasound
Article
 
Teenage girl with heat pad on stomach
Article
woman exercising
Article
 

WebMD Special Sections