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Megestrol Side Effects

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Sep 28, 2023.

Applies to megestrol: oral suspension, oral tablet.

Serious side effects of Megestrol

Along with its needed effects, megestrol may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking megestrol:

More common

Less common

Incidence not known

Other side effects of Megestrol

Some side effects of megestrol may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects.

Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common

Less common

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]


1. Cerner Multum, Inc. UK Summary of Product Characteristics.

2. Cerner Multum, Inc. Australian Product Information.

3. Product Information. Megestrol Acetate (megestrol). Par Pharmaceutical Inc. 2019.

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.