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CLIMESSE 2MG/0.7MG FILM-COATED TABLETS

Active substance(s): ESTRADIOL VALERATE / NORETHISTERONE / OESTRADIOL VALERATE

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Package leaflet: Information for the user

For more information, see ‘Blood clots in a vein (thrombosis)’

Climesse
2mg/0.7mg Film-coated Tablets
(Oestradiol valerate, norethisterone)

Note: Climesse is not a contraceptive. If it is less than 12 months since your last menstrual
period or you are under 50 years old, you may still need to use additional contraception to
prevent pregnancy. Speak to your doctor for advice.

Read all of this leaflet carefully, before you start taking this medicine because it
contains important information for you.
 Keep this leaflet. You may need to read it again.
 If you have any further questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
 This medicine has been prescribed for you only. Do not pass it on to others. It may harm
them, even if their signs of illness are the same as yours.
 If you get any side effects talk to your doctor or pharmacist. This includes any possible
side effects not listed in this leaflet.

HRT and cancer

What is in this leaflet:
1. What Climesse is and what it is used for
2. What you need to know before you take Climesse
3. How to take Climesse
4. Possible side effects
5. How to store Climesse
6. Content of the pack and other information
1. What Climesse is and what it is used for
Climesse is a Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT). It contains two types of female
hormones, an oestrogen and a progestogen. Climesse is used in postmenopausal women
with at least 12 months since their last natural period.
Oestradiol valerate is identical to the natural female hormone oestrogen. This hormone is
produced by the ovaries before the menopause. Norethisterone belongs to the group of
hormones known as progestogens. It has effects similar to the natural female hormone
progesterone, also produced by the ovaries before the menopause.
Climesse is used for:
Relief of symptoms occurring after menopause
Menopause occurs naturally in all women, usually between the ages of 45 and 55 years. It
occurs also in younger women who have their ovaries removed by surgery. During the
menopause, the amount of the oestrogen produced by a woman’s body drops. This can
cause symptoms such as hot face, neck and chest (hot flushes), sleep problems, irritability
and depression. Some women also have problems with urine control or dryness of the
vagina, which may cause discomfort during or after sexual intercourse.
Climesse alleviates these symptoms after menopause. You will only be prescribed
Climesse if your symptoms seriously hinder your daily life.
Prevention of osteoporosis
After the menopause some women may develop fragile bones (osteoporosis). You should
discuss all available options with your doctor.
If you are at an increased risk of fractures due to osteoporosis and other medicines are not
suitable for you, you can take Climesse to prevent osteoporosis after menopause.
2. What you need to know before you take Climesse
Medical history and regular check-ups
The use of HRT carries risks which need to be considered when deciding whether to start
taking it, or whether to carry on taking it.
The experience in treating women with a premature menopause (due to ovarian failure or
surgery) is limited. If you have a premature menopause the risks of using HRT may be
different. Please talk to your doctor.
Before you start (or restart) HRT, your doctor will ask about your own and your family’s
medical history. Your doctor may decide to perform a physical examination. This may
include an examination of your breasts and/or an internal examination, if necessary. He/she
should tell you what kind of changes in the breast you should look out for and may advise
you to have a breast X-ray (a mammogram).
Once you have started on Climesse, you should see your doctor for regular check-ups (at
least once a year). At these check-ups, discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of
continuing with Climesse.
Go for regular breast screening, as recommended by your doctor.
Do not take Climesse
If any of the following applies to you. If you are not sure about any of the points below, talk
to your doctor before taking Climesse,
 if you have or have ever had breast cancer, or if you are suspected of having it;
 if you have cancer which is sensitive to oestrogens, such as cancer of the womb
lining (endometrium), or if you are suspected of having it;
 if you have any unexplained vaginal bleeding;
 if you have excessive thickening of the womb lining (endometrial hyperplasia) that is
not being treated;
 if you have severe kidney disease;
 if you have or have ever had a blood clot in a vein (thrombosis), such as in the legs
(deep venous thrombosis), or the lungs (pulmonary embolism);
 if you have a blood clotting disorder (such as protein C, protein S, or antithrombin
deficiency);
 if you have or recently have had a disease caused by blood clots in the arteries, such as
a heart attack, stroke or angina;
 if you have or have ever had a liver disease and your liver function tests have not
returned to normal;
 if you have a rare blood problem called “porphyria” which is passed down in families
(inherited);
 if you are allergic (hypersensitive) to oestradiol valerate or norethisterone or any of the
other ingredients of Climesse (listed in section 6);
 if you are pregnant, or think you might be.
If any of the above conditions appear for the first time while taking Climesse, stop taking it
at once and consult your doctor immediately.
When to take special care with Climesse
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any of the following problems, before you start
the treatment, as these may return or become worse during treatment with Climesse. If so,
you should see your doctor more often for check-ups:
 Fibroids inside your womb
 Growth of womb lining outside your womb (endometriosis) or a history of excessive
growth of the womb lining (endometrial hyperplasia).
 Increased risk of developing blood clots (see “Blood clots in a vein (thrombosis)”)
 Increased risk of getting an oestrogen-sensitive cancer (such as having a mother,
sister or daughter or grandmother who has had breast cancer);
 High blood pressure
 A liver disorder, such as a benign liver tumour (liver adenoma)
 Diabetes
 Gallstones
 Migraine or severe headaches
 A disease of the immune system that affects many organs of the body (Systemic lupus
erythematosus, SLE)
 Epilepsy
 Asthma
 A disease affecting the eardrum and hearing (otosclerosis)
 A very high level of fat in your blood (triglycerides)
 Fluid retention due to cardiac or kidney problems
 Hypothyroidism (a condition in which your thyroid gland fails to produce enough thyroid
hormone and for which you are treated with thyroid hormone replacement therapy)
 Hereditary angioedema or episodes of rapid swelling of the hands, feet, face, lips,
eyes, tongue, throat (airway blockage) or digestive tract.
Stop taking Climesse and see a doctor immediately
If you notice any of the following when taking HRT:
 Any of the conditions mentioned in the ‘Do Not take Climesse’ section
 Yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes (jaundice). These may be signs of a
liver disease
 A large rise in your blood pressure (symptoms may be headache, tiredness,
dizziness)
 Migraine-like headaches which happen for the first time, with or without disturbed vision.
Headaches like these can be an early sign of a stroke. If you have already had a stroke,
talk with your doctor about whether the benefits of the treatment outweigh the possibly
increased risk.
 If you get pain in your chest that spreads to your arm or neck. This pain may be a sign of
heart disease.
 If you become pregnant
 If you notice signs of a blood clot, such as:
 painful swelling and redness of the legs
 sudden chest pain
 difficulty in breathing

Excessive thickening of the lining of the womb (endometrial hyperplasia) and cancer
of the lining of the womb (endometrial cancer)
Taking oestrogen-only HRT will increase the risk of excessive thickening of the lining of the
womb (endometrial hyperplasia) and cancer of the womb lining (endometrial cancer).
The progestogen in Climesse protects you from this extra risk.
In women who still have a womb and who are not taking HRT, on average, 5 in 1000 will be
diagnosed with endometrial cancer between the ages of 50 and 65.
For women aged 50 to 65 who still have a womb and who take oestrogen-only HRT,
between 10 and 60 women in 1000 will be diagnosed with endometrial cancer (i.e. between
5 and 55 extra cases), depending on the dose and for how long it is taken.
Irregular bleeding
You may have irregular bleeding or drops of blood (spotting) during the first 3-6 months of
taking Climesse. However, if the irregular bleeding:
 carries on for more than the first 6 months
 starts after you have been taking Climesse for more than 6 months
 carries on after you have stopped taking Climesse
 if you have painful menstrual periods
See your doctor as soon as possible.
Breast cancer
Evidence suggests that taking combined oestrogen-progestogen and possibly also
oestrogen-only HRT increases the risk of breast cancer. The extra risk depends on how
long you take HRT. The additional risk becomes clear within a few years.
However, it returns to normal within a few years (at most 5) after stopping treatment.
Compare
Women aged 50 to 79 who are not taking HRT, on average, 9 to 17 in 1000 will be
diagnosed with breast cancer over a 5-year period. For women aged 50 to 79 who are
taking oestrogen-progestogen HRT over 5 years, there will be 13 to 23 cases in 1000 users
(i.e. an extra 4 to 6 cases).
Regularly check your breasts. See your doctor if you notice any changes such as:
 dimpling of the skin
 change in the nipple
 any lump you can see or feel
Ovarian cancer
Ovarian cancer is rare. A slightly increased risk of ovarian cancer has been reported in
women taking HRT for at least 5 to 10 years.
Women aged 50 to 69 who are not taking HRT, on average about 2 women in 1000 will be
diagnosed with ovarian cancer over a 5-year period. For women who have been taking HRT
for 5 years, there will be between 2 and 3 cases per 1000 users (i.e. up to 1 extra case).
Effect of HRT on heart and circulation
Blood clots in a vein (thrombosis)
The risk of blood clots in the veins is about 1.3 to 3- times higher in HRT users than in
non-users, especially during the first year of taking it.
Blood clots can be serious, and if one travels to the lungs, it can cause chest pain,
breathlessness, fainting or even death.
You are more likely to get a blood clot in your veins as you get older and if any of the
following applies to you. Inform your doctor if any of these situations applies to you:
 you are unable to walk for a long time because of major surgery, injury or illness (see
also section 3, If you need to have surgery)
 you are seriously overweight (BMI >30 kg/m2)
 you have any blood clotting problem that needs long-term treatment with a medicine
used to prevent blood clots
 if any of your close relatives has ever had a blood clot in the leg, lung or another organ
 you have systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)
 you have cancer.
For signs of a blood clot, see “Stop taking Climesse and see a doctor immediately”.
Compare
Looking at women in their 50s who are not taking HRT, on average, over a 5-year period, 4
to 7 in 1000 would be expected to get a blood clot in a vein.
For women in their 50s who have been taking oestrogen-progestogen HRT for over 5 years,
there will be 9 to 12 cases in 1000 users (i.e. an extra 5 cases).
Heart disease (heart attack)
There is no evidence that HRT will prevent a heart attack.
Women over the age of 60 years who use oestrogen-progestogen HRT are slightly more
likely to develop heart disease than those not taking any HRT.
Stroke
The risk of getting stroke is about 1.5-times higher in HRT users than in non-users.
The number of extra cases of stroke due to use of HRT will increase with age.
Compare
Looking at women in their 50s who are not taking HRT, on average, 8 in 1000 would be
expected to have a stroke over a 5-year period. For women in their 50s who are taking
HRT, there will be 11 cases in 1000 users, over 5 years (i.e. an extra 3 cases).
Other conditions
HRT will not prevent memory loss. There is some evidence of a higher risk of memory loss
in women who start using HRT after the age of 65. Speak to your doctor for advice.
Taking other medicines
Please tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking or have recently taken any other
medicines, including medicines obtained without a prescription, herbal medicines or other
natural products. Some medicines may interfere with the effect of Climesse. This might lead
to irregular bleeding. This applies to the following medicines:
 medicines for epilepsy (such as phenobarbital, phenytoin, carbamazepine),
 medicines for tuberculosis (such as rifampicin, rifabutin),
 medicines for HIV infection (such as nevirapine, efavirenz, ritonavir, teleprevir,
nelfinavir),
 herbal remedies containing St John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum).
Laboratory tests
If you need a blood test, tell your doctor or the laboratory staff that you are taking Climesse,
because this medicine can affect the results of some tests.
Pregnancy and breast-feeding
Climesse is for use in postmenopausal women only. If you become pregnant, stop taking
Climesse and contact your doctor. Do not take Climesse if you are pregnant or while you
are breast-feeding.
Driving and using machines
Climesse has no known effects on the ability to drive and use machines.
Climesse contains lactose
Lactose is a form of sugar. If you have been told by your doctor that you have an
intolerance to some sugars, contact your doctor before taking Climesse.
3. How to take Climesse
Always use this medicine exactly as your doctor has told you. Your doctor will aim to
prescribe the lowest dose to treat your symptom for as short as necessary.
Speak to your doctor if you think this dose is too strong or not strong enough.
During the treatment your doctor may adjust the dose according to your individual needs.
When to start treatment
Climesse is a continuous combined HRT. This means that oestrogen and progestogen are
given continuously.
 If you are not currently taking HRT, or if you have been using a continuous
combined HRT (in which oestrogen and progestogen are given every day without
interruption), you can start to take Climesse on any convenient day.



If you are changing from a sequential HRT or cyclic HRT (in which the progestogen
is added for 12-14 days of the cycle), you should complete your treatment cycle and
then start taking Climesse immediately.

How to take Climesse
Take one tablet each day by following the sequence of numbers and arrows on the
calendar pack.
Swallow your tablets whole with a glass of water.

5. How to store Climesse






Keep out of the sight and reach of children.
Do not take this medicine after the expiry date which is stated on the carton. The expiry
date refers to the last day of that month.
Do not store above 25°C.
Store in the original package.
Do not throw away any medicine via wastewater or household waste. Ask your
pharmacist how to throw away medicines you no longer use. This measure will help to
protect the environment.
If your tablets become discoloured or show any signs of deterioration, take them back to
your pharmacist for safe disposal.

The pack has been designed specifically to help you take the tablets correctly.



Write the name of the day you take your first tablet in the box below. For example, if you
start your tablets on a Wednesday, then write “Wednesday” in the box. This day will also be
the day on which you will take tablets 8, 15 and 22. This will help you check that you have
taken each tablet on the right day.

6. Contents of the pack and other information

When you finish one blister pack, start the new one the next day whether or not you
experience bleeding. This will normally be the same day of the week as you started the
previous blister pack. Do not take a break between blister packs unless your doctor tells
you.
Write your start day here:

The tablets are best taken at the same time every day; try to get into a routine.
Follow your doctor’s instructions as to how and when you should take Climesse tablets and
never change the dose yourself, however well you feel.
If you are unsure about how much medicine to take or when to take it, ask your doctor or
pharmacist.
How long to take Climesse
From time to time, you will need to discuss with your doctor the possible risks and benefits
associated with Climesse and whether you still need the treatment. It is important that you
take the lowest possible effective dose and only for as long as needed.
If you have taken more Climesse than you should
Contact your doctor or pharmacist immediately if you have taken too much Climesse.
If you forget to take Climesse
If you forget to take a tablet at your usual time, try to take it within 12 hours. If this is not
possible, leave the forgotten tablet and continue to take the remaining tablets at the usual
time.
If you need to have surgery
If you are going to have surgery, tell the surgeon that you are taking Climesse. You may
need to stop taking Climesse about 4 to 6 weeks before the operation to reduce the risk of a
blood clot (see section 2, Blood clots in a vein). Ask your doctor when you can start taking
Climesse again.
If you stop taking Climesse
Stopping Climesse may increase the risk of breakthrough bleeding or spotting. If this occurs
after you stop treatment, contact your doctor immediately. Your doctor will need to work out
the reason for this.
After a long treatment break, consult your doctor before starting to take Climesse again.
If you have any further questions on the use of this medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
4. Possible side effects
The following diseases are reported more often in women using HRT compared to women
not using HRT:
 breast cancer
 abnormal growth or cancer of the lining of the womb (endometrial hyperplasia or cancer)
 ovarian cancer
 blood clots in the veins of the legs or lungs (venous thromboembolism)
 heart disease
 stroke
 probable memory loss if HRT is started over the age of 65
For more information about these side effects, see Section 2.
Like all medicines, this medicine can cause side effects, although not everybody gets them.
Some effects could be serious
These symptoms need immediate medical attention:
 Unexpected vaginal bleeding or spotting (breakthrough bleeding) after taking Climesse
for some time, or after you stop treatment
 Painful menstrual periods
 Painful swelling and redness of the legs
 Sudden chest pain
 Difficulty in breathing
 Pain in your chest that spreads to your arm or neck
 Yellowing of the eyes and face (jaundice)
 Rapid increase in your blood pressure
 Unexplained migraine-like headaches
 Breast changes, including dimpling of the breast skin, changes in the nipple, lumps that
you can see or feel.
Stop taking Climesse and tell your doctor immediately if you get any of the effects
mentioned above. Check the risks to be aware of with HRT in general in section 2, When to
take special care with Climesse.
Other side effects
In addition, the following side effects have been reported with Climesse:
 Breast tension and pain, enlargement of the breasts, breast cancer.
 Discharge from the vagina, irregular bleeding or spotting.
 Headache, dizziness, vertigo, tiredness or irritability, changes in sexual desire,
depression.
 Increased blood pressure, palpitations (sensation of fluttering in the chest), tender or
painful veins (signs of thrombophlebitis), fluid retention, nose bleeds.
 Indigestion, wind, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and bloating, problems with your
gall bladder (biliary stasis).
 General itching, hair loss, hives and skin rash, acne.
 Glucose intolerance which can make you sweat or feel faint after eating.
 Weight gain, leg cramps.
 Fibroids (benign growth in the uterus).
 Pain in extremity
The following side effects have been reported with other HRTs:
 gallbladder disease,
 various skin disorders:
 discoloration of the skin specially of face or neck known as “pregnancy patches”
(chloasma)
 painful reddish skin nodules (erythema nodosum)
 rash with target-shaped reddening or sores (erythema multiforme)
 decline in memory or mental ability
 diarrhoea
 dry eyes and contact lens discomfort
If you get any side effects talk to your doctor or pharmacist. This includes any side
effects not listed in this leaflet
Reporting of side effects
If you get any side effects, talk to your doctor, pharmacist or nurse. This includes any
possible side effects not listed in this leaflet. You can also report side effects directly at:
www.mhra.gov.uk/yellowcard. By reporting side effects, you can help provide more
information on the safety of this medicine.

What Climesse contains
 Each tablet contains 2mg oestradiol valerate and 0.7mg norethisterone.
 The other ingredients are lactose monohydrate, povidone K25, talc, magnesium
stearate, hyrpomellose, macrogol 400, titanium dioxide E171, iron oxide red, maize
starch.
What Climesse looks like and contents of the pack
The Climesse 2 mg/0.7 mg film-coated tablets are pink tablets embossed with “OG” on one
side and “CG” on the other.
Climesse is available in calendar blister packs of 28, 84 or 98 tablets.
Manufacturer:
Novartis Pharma GmbH, 90327 Nuremburg, Germany.
Procured from within the EU and repackaged by the Product Licence holder: G-Pharma
Ltd., Dakota Avenue, Salford M50 2PU.
PL 16369/1557

POM

Revision date: 14/04/2015
If you would like any more information, or would like the leaflet in a different format, please
contact:
Medical Information at Novartis Pharmaceuticals UK Ltd, telephone number 01276 698370
Climesse is a registered trade mark
Copyright Novartis Pharmaceuticals UK Limited

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Source: Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided here is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. This information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. If you have questions about the substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

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