Skip to main content

Megace Side Effects

Generic name: megestrol

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Oct 6, 2021.

Note: This document contains side effect information about megestrol. Some of the dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Megace.

For the Consumer

Applies to megestrol: oral suspension, oral tablets

Side effects include:

In patients with breast cancer or endometrial cancer: Weight gain, nausea, vomiting, hypertension, vaginal bleeding and discharge (including breakthrough bleeding), hyperglycemia, asthenia, rash.

In patients with cachexia: Diarrhea, flatulence, nausea, vomiting, hypertension, impotence, decreased libido, asthenia, rash, insomnia, anemia, fever, hyperglycemia, pain.

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to megestrol: compounding powder, oral suspension, oral tablet


Very common (10% or more): Adrenal insufficiency, cushingoid, Cushing's syndrome[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Thrombophlebitis, hypertension, hot flush

Common (1% to 10%): Cardiac failure, chest pain, cardiomyopathy, palpitation

Postmarketing reports: Deep vein thrombosis, thromboembolic phenomena[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Leukopenia[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Constipation

Common (1% to 10%): Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, flatulence, abdominal pain[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Pollakiuria, menorrhagia, erectile dysfunction, albuminuria, urinary incontinence, urinary tract infection, gynecomastia[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Pulmonary embolism (sometimes fatal), dyspnea

Common (1% to 10%): Cough, pharyngitis, lung disorder[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Rash, alopecia, moniliasis

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Herpes, pruritus, vesiculobullous rash, sweating, skin disorder[Ref]

Nervous system

Common (1% to 10%): Carpal tunnel syndrome, lethargy, paresthesia, convulsion, neuropathy, hypesthesia[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Tumor flare (with or without hypercalcemia), sarcoma[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Asthenia, pain, edema

Common (1% to 10%): Edema, peripheral edema[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Amblyopia[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Diabetes mellitus, glucose tolerance impaired, hyperglycemia, increased appetite, weight gain

Common (1% to 10%): LDH increased

Postmarketing reports: Glucose intolerance[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Mood altered, confusion, depression[Ref]

More about Megace (megestrol)

Consumer resources

Professional resources

Other Formulations

Related treatment guides


1. Cerner Multum, Inc. "UK Summary of Product Characteristics." O 0

2. "Product Information. Megestrol Acetate (megestrol)." Par Pharmaceutical Inc, Chestnut Ridge, NY.

3. Cerner Multum, Inc. "Australian Product Information." O 0

Further information

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

Some side effects may not be reported. You may report them to the FDA.