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Terms Of Use


Brand Name(s) : Acnocin, Androcur, Cyprostat, Dianette
Side Effects


Cyproterone acetate should be used with caution in:

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.


No specific storage instructions.


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 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.


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
  • Swelling breasts 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 stomach pain 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.


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


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.


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.


Before using this medicine, tell your prescriber of all the medicines you are taking including prescription medicines and medicines you have bought over the counter without a prescription. Tell your prescriber if you are taking vitamins or complementary remedies such as herbal products, as these can also interact with medicines.

If you are taking more than one medicine, these may interact with each other. Your prescriber may decide to use medicines which interact with each other if the benefit outweighs the risks. In these cases, the dose of your medicines may need to be adjusted or you may be monitored more closely.

The following medicines may interact with cyproterone acetate:

  • Oral antidiabetic medicines or insulin
  • Medicines used to treat tuberculosis, 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
  • Cholesterol-lowering medicines such as statins

This information does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, tell your prescriber of all the products you are using before taking this medicine.

If you have a question or want to discuss anything about your medicine, speak to your local pharmacist.


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.


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.

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Source: Selected from data included with permission and copyrighted by Boots UK Limited. 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.

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