Boots WebMD Partners in Health
Return To Boots

Medicines & treatments centre

Terms Of Use

CYPROTERONE ACETATE

Brand Name(s) : Acnocin, Androcur, Cyprostat, Dianette
Warnings
Uses
Side Effects
Precautions
Interactions
Overdose

CYPROTERONE ACETATE WARNINGS

Cyproterone acetate should be used with caution in:

  • People with liver problems
  • People who suffer blood clots (thrombosis or embolism) or a history of blood clots
  • People who have had strokes or heart attacks
  • People with sickle cellanaemia (a disorder of the red blood cells)
  • People who have a history of depression
  • People with diabetes.

It should not be used by:

  • People who are allergic (hypersensitive) to cyproterone acetate or any other ingredients in the tablet
  • Women who are pregnant or think they may be pregnant
  • Women who are breastfeeding
  • Those under 18 years old or whose testes or bones are not yet fully formed
  • People with liver diseases or who have previous or existing liver tumours
  • People with cancer (apart from prostate cancer if it is being treated with cyproterone acetate)
  • People who have ever been diagnosed with meningioma (a tumour of the tissue layer between the brain and the skull)
  • People with a wasting disease (that causes weight or muscle loss)
  • People who have suffered blood clots (thrombosis or embolism)

Also see list of precautions and interactions.

STORAGE

No specific storage instructions.

CYPROTERONE ACETATE USES

What is it used for?

  • Cyproterone acetate has several uses.
  • It belongs to a class of medicines called anti-androgens. It works by blocking the action of the male sex hormones (androgens) and reducing the amount of androgens produced in the body.
  • In general this drug is used in men to treat cancer of the prostate gland (a small gland found in men) and to reduce sex drive. It may also be given to women who have severe acne or excessive hair growth on the face and body.
  • Benefits of being on this drug can include reduced growth and spread of cancer cells and in prostate cancer patients, a reduced sex drive in men who have increased interest in sex, less body hair in women who have excessive hair, and treatment of acne in women.

Listed below are the typical uses of cyproterone acetate.

  • To reduce the possible worsening of prostate cancer, when starting other treatments for the condition.
  • For long-term treatment of prostate cancer when other medicines or surgery are not possible
  • To control sexual desire in men who have an increased sex drive (hypersexuality) and/or a sexual disorder
  • To treat excessive hair growth on the face and body in women
  • To treat severe acne in women (in combination with other hormonal drugs)

On occasion your doctor may prescribe this medicine to treat a condition not on the above list.

HOW TO USE/TAKE

How often do I take it?

  • Take this medication by mouth. It will usually need to be swallowed whole with a large glass of water, with or just after food.
  • Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it.
  • Remember to use it at the same time each day - unless specifically told not to by your doctor.
  • It may take some time before the full benefit of this drug takes effect.
  • Certain medical conditions may require different dosage instructions as directed by your doctor.

What dose?

  • Dosage is based on your age, gender, medical condition, response to therapy, and use of certain interacting medicines.

Do I need to avoid anything?

  • You may need to avoid or reduce alcohol consumption. In addition, cyproterone acetate may cause tiredness or weakness especially at the start of treatment. If this is the case, you should not drive or operate machinery. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

When can I stop?

  • It is important to continue taking this medication even if you feel well, unless your doctor tells you to stop. Always complete the full course as prescribed by your doctor.

CYPROTERONE ACETATE SIDE EFFECTS

Very common (affects more than one in ten people):

  • Inability to get an erection
  • Lower sex drive
  • Lower sperm count
  • Less liquid released upon ejaculation

Common (affects up to 1 in 10 people):

  • Restlessness
  • Tiredness
  • Weight changes, which can be associated with fluid retention
  • Low mood
  • Swellingbreasts that may be tender

Uncommon (affects up to 1 in 100 people):

  • Rash

Rare (affects up to 1 in every 1000 people):

  • Benign (non-malignant) liver tumours
  • Tender lumps in the breasts
  • Release of milky fluid from the nipples

Very rare (affects less than 1 in 10,000 people):

Other effects that have been reported:

  • Dry skin
  • Improvement in acne
  • Sweating
  • Hot flushes
  • Shortness of breath
  • Liver problems (severe and even fatal liver problems have been reported in patients on high-dose treatment). It may be necessary to have your liver tested regularly to monitor this and stop taking medication
  • Temporary loss of body hair
  • Reduction in hair growth on the body
  • Increased growth of hair on the head
  • Stroke
  • Heart attack
  • Raised blood pressure
  • Swelling of the ankles
  • Thrombosis (a blood clot)

If any of these persist or you consider them severe then inform your doctor or pharmacist.

Tell your doctor immediately if you develop any of the following symptoms:

  • a new stomachpain or discomfort that does not go away quickly.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

A serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction include: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), dizziness, trouble breathing.

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

The Yellow Card Scheme allows you to report suspected side effects from any type of medicine (which includes vaccines, herbals and over the counter medicines) that you are taking. It is run by the medicines safety watchdog called the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory agency (MHRA). Please report any suspected side effect on the Yellow Card Scheme website.

CYPROTERONE ACETATE PRECAUTIONS

Before taking cyproterone acetate, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other anti-androgens; or if you have any other allergies.

This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist in case of:

  • Liver disease
  • Cancer (apart from prostate cancer)
  • Wasting diseases (that cause weight or muscle loss)
  • Blood clots (thrombosis or embolism)
  • People who have ever been diagnosed with meningioma (a tumour of the tissue layer between the brain and the skull)

Before using this medication tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially any of the following:

  • Liver problems
  • Blood clots (thrombosis or embolism)
  • Strokes or heart attacks
  • Sickle cell anaemia (a disorder of the red blood cells)
  • Depression
  • Diabetes

Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist that you are taking this medication.

Does alcohol intake affect this drug?

  • Yes. Alcohol may prevent cyproterone acetate from working properly. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

The elderly: cyproterone acetate is suitable for elderly patients.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding - please ensure you read the detailed information below

PREGNANCY

Cyproterone acetate is not safe to take if you are, or are planning to become, pregnant.

It is sensible to limit use of medication during pregnancy whenever possible. However, your doctor may decide that the benefits outweigh the risks in individual circumstances and after a careful assessment of your specific health situation.

If you have any doubts or concerns you are advised to discuss the medicine with your doctor or pharmacist.

BREAST FEEDING

Cyproterone acetate is not safe to take if you are breastfeeding

It is sensible to limit use of medication during breastfeeding whenever possible. However, your doctor may decide that the benefits outweigh the risks in individual circumstances and after a careful assessment of your specific health situation.

If you have any doubts or concerns you are advised to discuss the medicine with your doctor or pharmacist.

CYPROTERONE ACETATE INTERACTIONS

Your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with them first.

This drug should not be used with the following medications because very serious, possibly fatal interactions may occur:

  • None known.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and non-prescription/herbal products you may use, especially of:

  • oral antidiabetic medicines or insulin, tuberculosis medicines such as rifampicin, medicines such as phenytoin for epilepsy or other illnesses, the herbal remedy known as St John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum), antifungal medicines such as ketoconazole, itraconazole, and clotrimazole, HIV medicines such as ritonavir, or cholesterol-lowering drugs such as statins.

This information does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using cyproterone acetate, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use.

CYPROTERONE ACETATE OVERDOSE

The effects of overdose with cyproterone acetate are not known.

If you think you, or someone you care for, might have accidentally taken more than the recommended dose of cyproterone acetate or intentional overdose is suspected, contact your local hospital, GP or if in England call 111. In Scotland call NHS 24. In Wales, call NHS Direct Wales. In the case of medical emergencies, always dial 999.

MISSED DOSE

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.

Find a medication

Search by medication name for information on over-the-counter or prescription medications including side effects and interactions.
indicates detailed medicines information

Source: Selected from data included with permission and copyrighted by Boots UK Limited or TicTac Communications Ltd. This copyrighted material is sourced from a licensed data provider and is not for distribution, except as may be authorised by the applicable terms of use.
CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgement of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse events, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular medicine is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any medicine, changing any diet, or discontinuing any course of treatment.

Search for a medicine or treatment

Search by medicine name or treatment for information including side effects and interactions.

Ex. Simvastatin, Ibuprofen, Amitriptyline Hydrochlorine

Popular Slideshows & Tools on Boots WebMD

woman looking at pregnancy test
Early pregnancy symptoms
donut on plate
The truth about sugar addiction
fish n chips
Diarrhoea & more
man coughing
10 common allergy triggers
couple watching sunset
How much do you know?
hand extinguishing cigarette
13 best tips to stop smoking
woman washing face
Living and dealing with eczema
boy looking at broccoli
Quick tips for feeding picky eaters
bag of crisps
Food cravings that wreck your diet
dogs face
Workout with Fido
polka dot dress on hangar
Lose weight without dieting