Skip to Content
Learn about Adcetris a treatment of Hodgkin Lymphoma

Raloxifene

Generic Name: raloxifene (ra LOX i feen)
Brand Name: Evista

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com on Sep 25, 2018 – Written by Cerner Multum

What is raloxifene?

See also: Prolia

Raloxifene affects the cycle of bone formation and breakdown in the body, and reduces loss of bone tissue.

Raloxifene is used to treat or prevent osteoporosis in postmenopausal women. Raloxifene is also used to reduce the risk of invasive breast cancer in postmenopausal women who have osteoporosis or who are otherwise at risk of invasive breast cancer.

Raloxifene is not a cancer medication and will not treat breast cancer.

Raloxifene may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Important Information

Taking raloxifene may increase your risk of a blood clot in your leg, your lung, or your eye. You should not take raloxifene if you have ever had a blood clot.

Raloxifene can also increase your risk of a stroke, which can be fatal. This risk is highest if you have coronary heart disease or certain risk factors (such as menopause, diabetes, smoking, being overweight, having high blood pressure or high cholesterol, having a family history of coronary artery disease, or if you have had a hysterectomy).

Do not take raloxifene if you are pregnant or may become pregnant.

Do not breast-feed while taking raloxifene.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use raloxifene if you are allergic to it, or if:

  • you have had a blood clot in your leg, your lung, or your eye.

Raloxifene can increase your risk of a stroke, which can be fatal. This risk is highest if you have coronary heart disease or certain risk factors (such as menopause, diabetes, smoking, being overweight, having high blood pressure or high cholesterol, having a family history of coronary artery disease, or if you have had a hysterectomy).

Raloxifene is not for use in men.

Tell your doctor if you have ever had:

  • heart disease;

  • coronary artery disease (clogged arteries);

  • a stroke or blood clot;

  • breast cancer;

  • liver or kidney disease;

  • abnormal vaginal bleeding; or

  • if you have not gone through menopause.

This medicine is for use only in women who can no longer get pregnant. Raloxifene can harm an unborn baby. Do not use if you are pregnant. Use effective birth control if you are not past menopause. Tell your doctor if you think you may be pregnant.

You should not breast-feed while using this medicine.

How should I take raloxifene?

Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets. Use the medicine exactly as directed.

Take the medicine at the same time each day, with or without food.

Raloxifene is only part of a complete treatment program that may also include diet, exercise, weight control, calcium or vitamin D supplements, and lifestyle changes. Follow your doctor's instructions very closely.

Your doctor should check your progress on a regular basis to determine whether you should continue this treatment. Self-examine your breasts for lumps on a monthly basis, and have regular mammograms.

If you need to have any type of surgery or will be on bed rest, you will need to stop taking raloxifene for at least 72 hours before your surgery or before you plan to be immobile. Any doctor or surgeon who treats you should know that you are taking raloxifene.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the medicine as soon as you can, but skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not take two doses at one time.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid while taking raloxifene?

If you take calcium supplements, do not take more than your doctor has prescribed. Taking more calcium than recommended will not provide extra protection for your bones, and may cause serious side effects including kidney stones.

Avoid sitting still for long periods of time during travel while you are taking raloxifene.

raloxifene can pass into body fluids (urine, feces, vomit). Caregivers should wear rubber gloves while cleaning up a patient's body fluids, handling contaminated trash or laundry or changing diapers. Wash hands before and after removing gloves. Wash soiled clothing and linens separately from other laundry.

Raloxifene side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using raloxifene and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • lumps or other changes in the breast;

  • signs of a stroke--sudden numbness or weakness (especially on one side of the body), sudden severe headache, slurred speech, problems with vision or balance;

  • signs of a blood clot in the lung--chest pain, sudden cough, wheezing, rapid breathing, coughing up blood; or

  • signs of a blood clot in your leg--pain, swelling, warmth, or redness in one or both legs.

Common side effects may include:

  • hot flashes;

  • leg cramps;

  • swelling in your hands, feet, or ankles;

  • joint pain;

  • flu symptoms; or

  • increased sweating.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Raloxifene dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Osteoporosis:

60 mg orally per day

Comments:
-For treatment or prevention of osteoporosis, advise patients to add supplemental calcium and/or vitamin D if daily intake is inadequate.
-When this drug is used to reduce the risk of invasive breast cancer, the optimum duration of treatment is not known.

Uses:
-Treatment and prevention of osteoporosis in postmenopausal women.
-Reduction in risk of invasive breast cancer in postmenopausal women with osteoporosis and/or at high risk of invasive breast cancer.

Usual Adult Dose for Prevention of Osteoporosis:

60 mg orally per day

Comments:
-For treatment or prevention of osteoporosis, advise patients to add supplemental calcium and/or vitamin D if daily intake is inadequate.
-When this drug is used to reduce the risk of invasive breast cancer, the optimum duration of treatment is not known.

Uses:
-Treatment and prevention of osteoporosis in postmenopausal women.
-Reduction in risk of invasive breast cancer in postmenopausal women with osteoporosis and/or at high risk of invasive breast cancer.

Usual Adult Dose for Prevention of Breast Cancer:

60 mg orally per day

Comments:
-For treatment or prevention of osteoporosis, advise patients to add supplemental calcium and/or vitamin D if daily intake is inadequate.
-When this drug is used to reduce the risk of invasive breast cancer, the optimum duration of treatment is not known.

Uses:
-Treatment and prevention of osteoporosis in postmenopausal women.
-Reduction in risk of invasive breast cancer in postmenopausal women with osteoporosis and/or at high risk of invasive breast cancer.

What other drugs will affect raloxifene?

Other drugs may affect raloxifene, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.

Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Hide