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Estradiol with progesterone oral

Updated 2 Feb 2023 | Oestrogens and HRT


Oral formulations of estradiol with progesterone.

Drugs List

  • BIJUVE 1mg+100mg capsules
  • estradiol 1mg and progesterone 100mg capsules
  • Therapeutic Indications


    HRT for treatment of oestrogen deficiency in women with intact uterus

    Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) for oestrogen deficiency symptoms in women with intact uterus who have been postmenopausal for more than 1 year.


    Women should commence treatment 12 months after their last menses.

    Patients who have experienced a surgically induced menopause may commence treatment immediately. Patients who are changing from a cyclical or continuous sequential preparation, should commence treatment once they have completed the 28 day cycle.


    One capsule every evening, with food.

    Additional Dosage Information

    Missed doses
    If a capsule is forgotten, it should be taken as soon as the patient remembers, therapy should then continue as before. Only the most recent capsule should be taken - the patient should not take multiple doses.

    If more than 12 hours have passed, the missed capsule should be left in the pack and the next dose taken at the usual time.

    Missed capsules may cause breakthrough bleeding or spotting in non-hysterectomised women.


    Abnormal liver function test
    Acute hepatic disorder
    Breast cancer
    Deep vein thrombosis
    History of breast cancer
    History of thromboembolic disorder
    Hormone dependent neoplasm
    Lupus anticoagulant
    Myocardial infarction
    Pulmonary embolism
    Thromboembolic disorder
    Thrombophilic disorder
    Uncontrolled endometrial hyperplasia
    Undiagnosed gynaecological haemorrhage

    Precautions and Warnings

    Family history of breast cancer
    Patients over 65 years
    Predisposition to thromboembolic disease
    Prolonged immobilisation
    Recent surgery
    Recent trauma
    Severe headache
    Diabetes mellitus
    Endometrial hyperplasia
    Haemolytic anaemia
    Hepatic adenoma
    Hepatic disorder
    History of chloasma
    Uterine fibroids

    Risk of pancreatitis in individuals with hypertriglyceridaemia
    Assess family medical history prior to commencing treatment
    Exclude breast cancer before treatment
    Exclude oestrogen dependent neoplasm before treatment
    Contains propylene glycol
    Do breast & pelvic exam. before & during treatment if clinically indicated
    Exclude pregnancy prior to initiation of treatment
    Abnormal and/or irregular bleeding should be investigated
    Advise patients of risks/benefits & review need for treatment regularly
    Discontinue treatment if patient develops seizures
    Monitor hepatic function in patients with history of hepatic disease
    Reassess need for continued treatment at regular intervals
    Advise patient of thromboembolic symptoms and to report them if they occur
    Advise patient that changes in their breasts should be reported to Dr/nurse
    Avoid immobilisation-treatment may cause increased risk of thromboembolism
    Discontinue at the onset of severe depression
    May affect results of some laboratory tests
    Advise patient to seek advice at first indications of pregnancy
    Discontinue at first signs of thrombophlebitis or thromboembolism
    Discontinue if cholestasis develops
    Discontinue if first appearance of migraine or severe or frequent headache
    Discontinue if jaundice or other evidence of hepatic impairment occurs
    Discontinue if significant rise in blood pressure occurs
    Discontinue if symptoms due to endometriosis are exacerbated
    Discontinue if venous thromboembolism develops
    Maintain treatment at the lowest effective dose
    Maintain treatment for the shortest possible duration
    Female: Not for contraception.Use non-hormonal contraception, if required
    Advise patient of increased risk of breast cancer vs benefits of HRT

    Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) should only be considered for patients whose symptoms adversely affect quality of life. An annual careful appraisal of the risks and benefits should be undertaken. When carrying out initial medical examinations of patients, ensure that investigations (including appropriate imaging tools, e.g. mammography) are carried out in accordance with currently accepted screening practices.

    The overall evidence suggests an increased risk of breast cancer in women taking combined oestrogen-progestogen (and possibly also oestrogen-only HRT). This increased risk is dependent on the duration of HRT. The Women's Health Initiative study (WHI) and epidemiological studies have both reported an increased risk of breast cancer in women taking combined oestrogen-progestogen for HRT. This increased risk becomes apparent within 3 years of starting treatment but returns to baseline within a few (at most five) years after stopping treatment.

    There is also a slightly increased risk of ovarian cancer in patients taking combined oestrogen-progesterone HRT, which becomes apparent within 5 years of therapy.

    HRT is associated with up to a 3 fold risk of developing venous thromboembolism, which most often presents in the first year of therapy. In post-operative patients attention should be given to prophylactic measures to prevent VTE following surgery. Where prolonged immobilisation is liable to follow elective surgery, consideration should be given to temporarily stopping HRT 4 to 6 weeks earlier, if possible. Treatment should not be restarted until the patient is fully mobilised.

    The risk of coronary artery disease is slightly increased during the use of combined oestrogen-progesterone HRT which increases with age.

    The risk of ischaemic stroke is increased 1.5 fold in patients taking combined oestrogen-progesterone therapy which increases with age.

    Fluid retention may be experienced in patients taking oestrogens and thus patients with cardiac or renal dysfunction should be carefully observed. Additionally, as rare cases of increased of plasma triglycerides (leading to pancreatitis) have been reported in women taking oestrogen therapy, patients with pre-existing hypertriglyceridaemia should be followed closely.

    Patients who require thyroid hormone therapy should have their thyroid function monitored regularly whilst on HRT.

    There is no evidence that HRT improves cognitive function. There is some evidence of increased risk of dementia in women who start using continuous combined HRT after the age of 65.

    Pregnancy and Lactation


    Hormone replacement therapy is contraindicated during pregnancy.

    Should pregnancy occur, treatment should be discontinued immediately.

    At the time of writing there is limited published information regarding the use of combined estradiol-progesterone during pregnancy. Potential risks are unknown, however estradiol has been associated with cardiovascular defects, eye and ear abnormalities in the newborn when having been exposed to these in the womb. However, some studies have failed to find a relationship with cardiovascular defects and non-genital malformations. Development alterations in the psychosexual performance of boys have been attributed to exposure to estradiol and progestogen in the womb. Males who have been exposed to estradiol and progestogen have demonstrated a trend to have less heterosexual characteristics and fewer masculine interests than males which have not been exposed to these hormones prenatally (Briggs, 2015).


    Hormone replacement therapy is contraindicated during breastfeeding.

    Use of combined estradiol-progesterone when breastfeeding is contraindicated by the manufacturer. Available data indicates combined estradiol-progesterone is expressed in human breast milk, but the quantity is unknown.

    Oestrogenic agents demonstrate lower infant weight gain, decreased milk production and decreased composition of nitrogen and protein content of human milk (Briggs, 2015). Even though the extent of these changes is low, the changes in milk production and composition may be of nutritional importance in malnourished mothers. Because of the reasons mentioned above the use of this medication during lactation should be avoided.

    Side Effects

    Abdominal discomfort
    Abdominal tenderness
    Abnormal liver function tests
    Acute pancreatitis
    Adnexa uteri cyst
    Alanine aminotransferase increased
    Aspartate aminotransferase increased
    Attention disturbances
    Back pain
    Blood pressure changes
    Breast changes
    Breast tenderness
    Cervical changes
    Concentration disturbances
    Coronary artery disorder
    Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
    Dream abnormalities
    Dry mouth
    Dry skin
    Endometrial hypertrophy
    Erythema multiforme
    Erythema nodosum
    Fluid retention
    Gallbladder disease
    Hypersensitivity reactions
    Impaired memory
    Increase in alkaline phosphatase
    Increased fibrinolytic activity
    Increased libido
    Increased partial thromboplastin time
    Increased risk of breast cancer
    Increased risk of ovarian cancer
    Ischaemic stroke
    Mood changes
    Muscle spasm
    Musculoskeletal pain
    Oral discomfort
    Otitis media
    Painful extremities
    Pelvic pain
    Postmenopausal bleeding
    Prothrombin time increased
    Pulmonary embolism
    Sensory disturbances
    Sleep disorders
    Superficial vein thrombophlebitis
    Uterine fibroids
    Vaginal discharge
    Vaginal haemorrhage
    Vascular purpura
    Visual disturbances
    Vulvovaginal infections
    Vulvovaginal itching
    Weight changes

    Effects on Laboratory Tests

    Hormone replacement therapy, especially oestrogen-progestogen combined treatment may increase the density of mammographic images and adversely effect the detection of breast cancer.

    The use of oestrogen may influence the laboratory results of certain endocrine tests and liver enzymes.

    Further Information

    Last Full Review Date: October 2021

    Reference Sources

    Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation: A Reference Guide to Fetal and Neonatal Risk, 10th edition (2015) ed. Briggs, G., Freeman, R. Wolters Kluwer Health, Philadelphia.

    Summary of Product Characteristics: Bijuve 1mg/100mg capsules. Theramex UK Limited. Revised February 2021.

    NICE Evidence Services Available at: Last accessed: 19 October 2021

    US National Library of Medicine. Toxicology Data Network. Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed).
    Available at:
    Estradiol. Last revised: 17 March 2021
    Last accessed: 19 October 2021

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